When to bring your dog in from the cold, and when it's OK to let them out

As temperatures dip below freezing, some Islanders might be wondering how to protect their dogs from the cold.

'If it's too cold for us — it's probably too cold for them as well'

The way a short-haired pet like a greyhound will react to colder weather will differ from the way a husky does, says Jennifer Harkness, development manager at the P.E.I. Humane Society. (Shutterstock / Sanhajietis)

As temperatures dip below freezing, some Islanders might be wondering how to protect their dogs from the cold.

"What we always say as the general rule is, 'if it's too cold for us — it's probably too cold for them as well," said Jennifer Harkness, development manager at the P.E.I. Humane Society.

Different breeds in cold weather

But there are exceptions to every rule, Harkness said.

Some breeds are made for the cold, and although they should not be left out all day or night — they do enjoy being out in cooler weather, she said.

"Really it is about your individual animal and how they react and you'll see a change in their behaviour if they're uncomfortable."

The way a short-haired pet like a greyhound will react to colder weather will differ from the way a husky does, she said.

It's all about looking for the signs, Harkness said.

Checking for discomfort

"You'll see them shaking and shivering, hunched posture, tucked tail, lifting their paws off the ground," she said.

Short-haired breeds may need jackets and booties for walks when temperatures dip below freezing.

Harkness said checking your pet's paws for cracks and scratches from cold and dry weather is another way to tell if they are being exposed to temperatures too cold for them.

She also wanted to remind Islanders that during the winter months smaller animals like cats may seek warmth under the hoods of cars.

More P.E.I. news

With files from Jessica Doria-Brown

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