How Cold Is Too Cold For German Shepherds

Are you wondering if German shepherds feel the cold? Keep reading to find out their thoughts on this. You’ll also learn how to keep them warm, what constitutes as too cold for a German shepherd and other tips for making sure they stay safe in the winter! If you own a German Shepherd we also recommend you read our guide on the Best Dog Food For German Shepherds to help provide your dog with the optimal nutrition.

Do German Shepherds Get Cold?

German shepherds are as likely to get cold as any other creature in the world. While their double coat can keep them warm when it’s above zero, they will still need help with winter conditions.

How Cold Is Too Cold For German Shepherds?

As a general rule, anything below 40°F is too cold for most dogs. And once it falls below 20°F, hypothermia and frostbite are likely to occur. (According to PetMD). However, even 50°F can be dangerous to a german shepherd who’s exposed. Especially puppies and dogs that aren’t prepared for the cold weather.

Other Factors For How Cold Your German Shepherd Will Get

Additionally, there are other factors to consider in determining how cold is too cold for your dog.

Is It Wet Outside? – If your german shepherd is wet or damp, they aren’t going to be able to insulate themselves and are much more likely to feel the effects of cold. This can happen, even when the temperature doesn’t seem that bad.

Is It Sunny or Cloudy? – Cloud cover during the day will make things feel cold compared to a sunny day, and lack of cloud cover at night will also cause the environment to be colder.

Is It Windy Outside? – We’ve all felt the effects of windy days before. Even on a hot day, the wind can make you feel cold very quickly. And it doesn’t even discriminate between long-haired and short-haired dogs! The wind chill can make the weather drastically colder for a dog.

Is The Dog Exercising? – Last but not least, if you want to make your German Shepherd stay warmer during cold weather, they need ample exercise to stay warmer. If your dog is running and working during the cold weather then they will stay warmer. But if they are just laying down then they will be much colder.

Do German Shepherds Handle The Cold Better Than Other Dog Breeds?

German shepherds are able to tolerate cold weather much better than other dogs because of their double coat which helps to keep them warmer and dryer compared to other dogs.

A double coat consists of two types of fur that provide additional insulation, making the animal water resistant, and keeping them warm during the cold months of the year.

The outer coat is a dog’s first line of defense for protecting itself from wind and water. This outer coat is vital for German Shepherds who are working or living in cold climates.

If your German shepherd has a plush and warm coat, it can act as good insulation. This is why it it important to keep your dog’s coat long during the winter months.

How To Know If Your German Shepherd Is Cold

One of the main reasons your dog might get sick is because they’re too cold—and if you don’t spot the signs, things can quickly go downhill. Below are the most common signs that your German Shepherd is cold.

Your Dog Is Shivering

A cold dog will shiver to try to warm themselves up. If you see that your german shepherd is shivering, they need to be warmed up as soon as possible.

Remember that both shivering and shaking are symptoms of excitement. If the weather is warm, it’s likely your pup isn’t cold at all.

Your Dog Is Barking And Agitated

If you leave your dog outside they can start barking, whining, and crying when it gets too cold.

Pets left outside for extended periods of time are at risk for extreme temperatures and injury.

If It Is Too Cold For Humans It Might Be Too Cold For Your Dog

It is important to be mindful of the weather when considering if you want to leave your german shepherd outside. If it is too cold for humans to spend time outside then it is recommended to not leave your German Shepherd outside for extended periods of time.

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Dr. Jacob Hawthorne, DVM

Dr. Jacob Hawthorne, DVM is a certified veterinarian who graduated from the University of California - Davis Veterinary School in 2012. He specializes in nutrition and veterinary medicine for companion animals such as dogs, cats, rabbits, and more. He has been featured in websites such as PetMD, Yahoo News, Hills Pet, Daily Paws, and more. Learn more about Dr. Jacob Hawthorne, DVM.

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