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  1. #1
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    Default Short haired in cold weather

    What do you guys do with your short haired dogs in the cold. Below freezing, teens, negative? I gauge my dogs warmth by his ears. But hes only been down to 40. If they are warm I know hes fine. If they are cooling off I throw more on top of him.

    If their paws are dry do you worry about keeping something on them at night? His synthetic coat holds heat well so a quick walk holds a lot of heat as well.

    Any experience on your end is greatly appreciated


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  2. #2

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    My lab has walked with me for close to 2000 trail miles. Much of which has been in freezing temps. He is pretty good at staying warm by himself. Outside dogs do it year round. However if it your dog is having trouble doing so, they make insulated vests for dogs. As well, if you could find an old down UL sleeping bag on ebay, cut it to fit his size using the head end and then sew it back real well I have been thinking of this idea myself. The biggest help I have found is for himto have a CCF pad to lay on. Same purpose as humans use it for.
    Trail Miles: 3,715.9
    AT Trips: 67
    AT Map 1 Completion: 1818.9 Springer, GA - Franconia Notch, NH
    AT Map 2 Completion: 263.8 Gaps From GA - PA

  3. #3
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    I had a similar issue with my jack Russell. He has a ruff wear fleece that works well but typically hes ok as long as were moving. At camp he gets cold fast so I use a cut down zlite as my sit pad and as his bed at night. I bought a light weight packable down vest from Costco for under $20...sewed up waist and arm holes...its now a dog sleeping bag. I put this inside my zipped up rain shell so keeps bag off the dirt under our tarp. Seems comfortable to around 10* so far...no shivering..


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  4. #4
    Registered User kestral's Avatar
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    My dog has a ruff wear fleece and a ruff wear rain coat (sounds dumb but blocks the wind) . I put my hand under her coat to test warmth. She starts night at foot of bed on end of my sleep pad. If really cold she will nose up and snuggle under my sleeping bag. I use bag unzipped like a quilt. Temp was 17degrees that night. I try not to be out when it's that cold. We were both warmer!
    My dog is older and has arthritis to hip and one paw. She does much better when she sleeps warm.

  5. #5
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    Hes got a good sleep system keeping him off the ground. I was able to get a ruffwear sleeping pad and the synthetic cover for it for under 40$ and I throw a zlite sol in the middle of the two. The problem is when hes warm and passes out he comes out of the ball and stretches. Hes about the length of my wife.

    We also have a fleece and synthetic coat for him. It sounds like once again another reason why hes spoiled. Hes about to find out what 10* feels like so Im just going to bring a polartex blanket just Incase.

    Would you say the belly is a better gauge then the ears? Just keep up with checking his ears? How low do you think the average short haired dog could go in a sleep system like that? I know they are all different just like humans we could be 10* either way on an EN rating.


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  6. #6
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    Our dog is 1/2 Viszla and 1/2 lab, so she has a coat that is short and thin, but does have a little bit of undercoat. She is highly active, so she is happiest with nothing on when she is below treeline while we are moving regardless of how cold it is, even below zero on several occasions. We do quite a lot of winter hiking/climbing.

    Last February, we climbed Mounts Monroe and Washington in New Hampshire. It was about 20 degrees F with very little wind at the summit of Monroe where I had not yet put on her puffy coat.

    Attachment 40859

    An hour later as we were nearing the summit of Washington, the wind picked up and I put my dogs puffy coat on her because she started cowering at my feet as she does when she is uncomfortable. As we descended heading north toward Jefferson, the weather turned harsh enough that I had to put on more layer, mittens, mask and goggles. My dog was not happy even with her coat on until we were in the lee of Mount Clay. In the end we made it down just fine and as soon as we got below treeline she was rolling around on her back letting me know she wanted her coat off again.

    Attachment 40861

    I've never needed to provide any paw protection for my dog in the winter.
    When sleeping overnight, I have a short Z-rest pad she sleeps on. As soon as we start making camp, I put her puffy on her to maintain warmth. And, if it is much below freezing, I pull her in under my quilt to sleep because otherwise she doesn't settle down well and shivers all night long. I would NOT try to winter camp with my dog without the ability to pull her in under my quilt with me to keep her warm. My quilt is a synthetic over-quilt I put over the top of my 20*F bag for winter use. This system has worked for us down to -15*F.
    I'm not lost. I'm exploring.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by nsherry61 View Post
    Our dog is 1/2 Viszla and 1/2 lab, so she has a coat that is short and thin, but does have a little bit of undercoat. She is highly active, so she is happiest with nothing on when she is below treeline while we are moving regardless of how cold it is, even below zero on several occasions. We do quite a lot of winter hiking/climbing.

    Last February, we climbed Mounts Monroe and Washington in New Hampshire. It was about 20 degrees F with very little wind at the summit of Monroe where I had not yet put on her puffy coat.

    Attachment 40859

    An hour later as we were nearing the summit of Washington, the wind picked up and I put my dogs puffy coat on her because she started cowering at my feet as she does when she is uncomfortable. As we descended heading north toward Jefferson, the weather turned harsh enough that I had to put on more layer, mittens, mask and goggles. My dog was not happy even with her coat on until we were in the lee of Mount Clay. In the end we made it down just fine and as soon as we got below treeline she was rolling around on her back letting me know she wanted her coat off again.

    Attachment 40861

    I've never needed to provide any paw protection for my dog in the winter.
    When sleeping overnight, I have a short Z-rest pad she sleeps on. As soon as we start making camp, I put her puffy on her to maintain warmth. And, if it is much below freezing, I pull her in under my quilt to sleep because otherwise she doesn't settle down well and shivers all night long. I would NOT try to winter camp with my dog without the ability to pull her in under my quilt with me to keep her warm. My quilt is a synthetic over-quilt I put over the top of my 20*F bag for winter use. This system has worked for us down to -15*F.
    Now how do you sleep with her with a mummy bag and a quilt and a sleeping pad in winter keeping everything together and not have drafts in that cold? My dog is a 105 lb Rhodesian ridgeback and the only way I could see him under my quilt is if my wife and I used the thermarest pad straps. The nice thing is I keep his nails well trimmed so Im getting use to his claws on our pads but not sold yet


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