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jafo220 12-29-2013 02:07 PM

Outfitting Your GSD For Cold Weather Outdoors.
How do you outfit your dog for cold conditions including snow and ice conditions when you and the dog just gotta go out for that walk.

Cruz and I generaly take longer walks maybe in the 1 to 1.5 mile range. We take longer when the weather permits. I just don't want him getting injured by ice and snow or severe windchill while out. Today, the windchill was in the one degree area and we had gusts in the 10 to 15 mph range. I know it's not the most extreme, just wondering how anyone who ventures out like myself outfits thier dog.

I need to get some balm for his paws. I was thinking about some kind of vest or coat. I looked at some of those dog boots, but I can almost be certain it would wear me out getting those on him. So I'll just stick with the balm. The boots are kinda cool though.

Pics would be wlecome if you have any of your dogs outfitted for cold weather.

VTGirlT 12-29-2013 02:32 PM

I know some people put jackets or the dog version of horse blankets on their dogs, including dogs who have plenty of dog fur, like GSD. And just like lots of horses, i dont think certain breeds of dogs need them. My friend has a pitty and she gets a fleece in the house and a jacket and booties for outside, but that is because she actually needs it because she shivers when she is outside and even inside sometimes when its really cold.

Zelda gets mushers secret or she wears booties when i walk her in town, only because of all the salt on the road and side walks that releases chemicals and hurts her paws.
I would prefer mushers secret, but unfortunately i have to apply it ever time before i go out and its just getting to expensive so i got booties for her and she does okay in them, getting them on can be a pain especially if she is super energetic- but its all worth it in the end!.

Other than that Zelda is a snow dog and would be out there longer if she could!

MyHans-someBoy 12-29-2013 03:35 PM

I have never seen Hans react to the cold like he's the least bit uncomfortable, no matter how cold or how long we stay out. I don't think he needs a jacket, but if I put him in his kennel, I will put a pad down for him so he doesn't have to be directly on the ground. However, I've seen him plop down in the snow and just lay there like it's no big deal. Makes me shiver to think about it!

Our Cowdog, OTOH, has a really short, slick coat and appears to be freezing nearly to death at 50 degrees. I do have a jacket for her. :) Poor girl. She has a heated pad in her kennel, a heated pad in her box on the porch and spends every night in our basement.

Nobody spoiled around here. :D

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MyHans-someBoy 12-29-2013 03:42 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Oh, yeah, pic is kind of dark, but Belle Starr in her stylin' jacket. It is made of fleece and doesn't look like it would help much, but apparently it does, as she doesn't shiver when she's wearing it.Attachment 155498

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Syaoransbear 12-29-2013 05:17 PM

The only thing I worry about is ears since german shepherds have such little fur on their enormous ears, but there's not much I can do about that. And despite temperatures around -45C(-49F) some days his ears have been fine, so I'm not really worried at all anymore.

missus_e 12-29-2013 06:13 PM

My rough collie has strangely sensitive paws, and we use Musher's Secret for her. I actually got it to help her figure out how to get traction when we swapped out the carpeting for hardwood floors, and I haven't yet gotten to take her anywhere lengthy while using it since it's been snowy, but I've heard a lot of great things about it.

SuperG 12-29-2013 06:18 PM

Boots are my only "winterization" for my gal....when it gets to about 0-15 below F. I think I might use them more often as the chemicals the city lays down on the roads are pretty nasty on a dog's paws and pads. The sessions I have with my pooch either at the dog park or in the backyard when there is fresh snow also allows for the use of the boots as the iceballs which form between her pads are pretty nasty. I did just recently buy some Musher's Secret and will be testing that out to see if it reduces the formation of iceballs....I'll be impressed if it does.


jafo220 12-29-2013 11:00 PM

Interesting. I know the GSD is pretty resilient, but I really don't know thier threshold as far as cold weather goes. I can pretty much read my dog in hot weather and won't push him to hard to far. The cold is alittle sneakier.

I've thought about the boots but man Cruz's feet are so darn big and I don't mean lengthwise as much as overal girth. But he is, compaired to other GSD's, has shorter hair. I've seen him shaking after playing in the backyard in the snow. But he seems fine on our long walks. We stay off the sidewalks and streets as I'm lucky in that I live across the street from a very large field with grass around it. I think it's alittle easier on his feet. The one thing that really makes me wonder is the windchill factor. I know it can be piercing. I know in cold weather, the core body temp is highly important. Thats why I was wondering about the body jackets.

jafo220 12-29-2013 11:01 PM


Originally Posted by MyHans-someBoy (Post 4739114)
Oh, yeah, pic is kind of dark, but Belle Starr in her stylin' jacket. It is made of fleece and doesn't look like it would help much, but apparently it does, as she doesn't shiver when she's wearing it.Attachment 155498

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Hey, if it works. But it seems to look good on Belle.

brembo 12-30-2013 02:28 AM

Putting a coat on a GSD in temps above zero F is akin to putting a life-jacket on a fish. They are happiest when the mercury is hovering below freezing. Not to say toss em out in the cold all day long without a warm place to take a break now and again. My old guy Banjo would spend hours outside when the temps were in the teens. I put a lounge chair cushion down for him and he'd lay on that and survey his realm for 90% of the day in cold that would be dangerous for a well clothed human.

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