Pugs and Cold Weather: Does my Pug need a winter coat?

Pugs and Cold Weather: Does my Pug need a winter coat?

If you live in a cold climate where it snows at least half the year, you likely have a selection of winter clothing. But does your pug also need winter clothes to combat the cold weather? Some may poke fun at those who dress their pugs up in jackets, scarves and even a pair of winter boots but just like you pugs get cold. While some may think that due to their fur and their tendency to overheat, pugs would enjoy cold weather, the reality is that their coats are quite thin and aren’t cold resistant. Also, since they’re much smaller in size, they’re more likely to lose heat which causes them to get cold rather easily. If you find yourself freezing during a brisk walk, just know that your little guy is suffering along with you.  Feel free to head on back home as soon as your pug has used the washroom. They don’t need super long walks, especially if there are extreme weather conditions. Since winters can be harsh, here are a few winter tips to benefit your pug:

Bundle Up – Help your pug prevent frostbite with some winter clothing. Depending on how cold it is outside (below 0 or above it) you may want to either put your pug in a sweater or coat. Remember that just as you get cold even with a jacket on, your pug may experience the cold weather regardless of whether the coat is on or not. You will also want to put some booties on your pug as well. The cold ground can also harm your pugs paws. If your pug is a puppy you’ll need to use even more caution. While the two of you are outdoors, be sure to monitor their breathing. If you find that your pug is panting heavily, you may have overdressed them. Just as pugs don’t like cold weather, they’re also extremely prone to overheating.

Never leave a pug outside unattended – As a pug owner, you should never leave your pug outside unattended in the winter. It’s a little bit of a safety issues but mostly a empathy issue. By standing outside in the freezing cold while your pug is in the yard using the washroom, you feel just as cold as your pug does. As a result, you won’t make your pug wait by the door until you finally feel like letting him in. Since you’ll both be absolutely freezing, you’ll both want to rush inside immediately. Fur coats only keep you so warm.

Be mindful of ice –  During evening walks with your pug, watch out for ice. Do your due diligence and salt your own driveway and sidewalk and talk to neighbours about doing theirs as well.  While your boots may have traction tracks, your pugs paws or booties likely don’t. Pugs are prone to slipping all over ice so be patient with them. I know you may want to videotape how funny they look while they walk on ice but they’re actually struggling. If they prefer it let them walk on snow, but make sure they have booties and legwarmers on so they don’t get too cold.

Be patient –  Dressing your pug up in the winter can be a hassle. Sometimes putting on a coat takes way longer than it should, practice patience. Just as you needed to or may need to dress your toddlers or newborns in the winter, you’ll need to dress up your pug. It’s one tiny part of your responsibility.  Also, be patient during walks. Allow your pug to use the washroom and don’t tug on his leash just because you want him to hurry up because your cold.

Let them go inside when they want to – If you find that during your winter walk, your pug doesn’t go your normal path but instead wants to turn around and go home, follow his lead. If it’s so cold outside that they only want to go to the washroom really quick and then head home, do that. Your pug will use nonverbal cues to communicate with you that they do not really love the cold weather.  Follow your pug’s lead.

Keep your pug away from antifreeze – With colder weather, comes more chemicals. From antifreeze to other car products, you’ll need to make sure your pug isn’t sniffing or licking toxic liquids around cars or your garage. Pay attention to your pug’s whereabouts when outdoors to ensure that he doesn’t consume toxic liquids from your neighbours’ properties either. If your pug starts convulsing or have drunk-like behavior, drop everything and head to the vet immediately. The vet can try to help prevent your pug from dying of toxicity.

Have fun with them – First snowfalls, hopping through snow, winter can be a fun time for pugs, especially if it’s their first. On a milder day, play in the snow with your pug. Jump in the snow together. Take winter pug selfies. Record videos of your pug playing in the snow. Make it a fun event that your pug will cherish. And once the two of you are exhausted from your winter fun time, cuddle up on the couch and watch a couple of pug movies and TV shows together.

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