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American Bullies are a tough-looking breed with a thick, muscular build which is why many dog owners believe that these dogs would not be affected by cold weather.
So, do American Bullies get Cold? And If they do, what can you do to keep them warm in winter?
American Bullies get cold easily because their bodies cannot regulate extreme temperatures for extended periods of time. They have short coats that don’t offer enough protection against the cold and short legs that cause their bellies to come in contact with cold surfaces while walking.
Keep reading to learn more about why American Bullies cannot tolerate cold weather, what happens if they get too cold, and how to help them stay warm in winter.
Can American Bullies Tolerate Cold Temperatures?
Despite their muscular appearance, American Bullies get cold easily and can only tolerate cold temperatures for short periods of time.
The main reason for this is that their bodies cannot regulate extreme temperatures, and they lose heat faster than they can produce it.
Another reason they get cold easily is that Bullies have short coats, which don’t provide enough insulation against cold temperatures. They also have short legs, which cause their bellies to come more in contact with cold surfaces as they’re walking.
However, the degree to which American Bullies can tolerate cold temperatures varies from one dog to another, and it depends on several factors, such as the dog’s age, size, and even coat color.
Factors That Determine How Much Bullies Can Tolerate the Cold
Let’s take a closer look at the factors that determine how much American Bullies can tolerate cold temperatures:
- The Dog’s Age –American Bullies that are older usually have more health issues, so they tend to get cold more easily.
- The Dog’s Size – American Bullies with smaller builds and low fat tend to get cold more easily.
- The Dog’s Coat Color – American Bullies with lighter-colored coats will absorb less heat on warm days than American Bullies with darker coats, so they tend to get cold more easily.
How Cold Is Too Cold for American Bullies?
A temperature of 45°F (7°C) or below is often considered to be too cold for American Bullies.
Their bodies will not be able to tolerate this kind of temperature, and prolonged exposure will put them at a higher risk of developing various health issues.
Signs That Your American Bully Is Too Cold
It’s very important to be aware of the signs that your American Bully is too cold, so you can take immediate action to warm it up.
So, here are the most common signs you should be on the lookout for:
- Excessive shivering and trembling
- Loudly barking or whining for no apparent
- Staying indoors and refusing to go outside, even for a short time
- Lifting its paws off the ground when it’s outside
- Sticking to the warmest areas of the house
- Severe lack of energy and remaining in bed often
Can American Bullies Live Outside in Winter?
American Bullies cannot live outside or sleep outside during winter.
They can only remain outside for short periods of time as their bodies will not be able to tolerate the cold temperature, and they will be at risk of developing various health issues.
There are also other dangers to leaving American Bullies outside, as they might feel isolated and depressed, which will lead them to exhibit some destructive behaviors, or they might also swallow too much snow, accidentally hurt themselves, get into fights with other dogs, or get even stolen.
If you live in a rural area, there are also always the risks of predators like coyotes and wolves, and you can learn about the risks of coyotes on your dog here.
So, if you have no other option but to leave your dog outside in winter, make sure to provide it with a sufficiently insulated dog house or shelter with bedding and a blanket inside. Also, make sure that your dog has access to enough food and fresh water while it’s outside so it can maintain its energy levels and stay hydrated.
What Happens If American Bullies Get Too Cold?
If American Bullies get too cold, they will experience a general feeling of discomfort and will be at risk of developing some dangerous health problems.
So, let’s take a closer look at some potential health problems your dog might suffer from due to prolonged exposure to cold temperatures.
Getting sick with the flu is to be expected during winter, and while it’s not the most dangerous health problem, it can still be very difficult for your dog to experience.
Symptoms of flu usually start mildly, and they include sniffles and sneezes, runny nose and excessive nasal discharge, warm ears, watery eyes, frequent shivering and trembling, lack of appetite, and lack of energy.
In more severe cases, the symptoms will include a wheezing or a wet-sounding cough and more difficulty with breathing.
You can usually treat the symptoms by letting your dog rest and giving it a lot of warm fluids. However, if the symptoms remain persistent or become more severe, you need to take your dog to a vet for a more effective treatment.
Frostbite is a more dangerous health problem, and it occurs due to prolonged exposure to extremely cold temperatures and snow without taking any protective measures.
The blood vessels in the areas that were exposed to extreme cold start will narrow in order to preserve the body’s core temperature, which can cause discoloration accompanied by painful swelling and blisters.
If you notice that your dog has frostbite, you need to try to warm up the areas affected as much as possible by covering the dog with blankets or applying heated pads, and then you need to take your dog to a vet to get the required treatment.
Hypothermia is one of the most dangerous health conditions, as it can be fatal if it’s not treated on time. It mainly occurs due to prolonged exposure to extremely cold temperatures or having the dog’s coat submerged in cold water.
This will cause the dog’s body to lose heat a lot faster than it can produce it, which will lead to a wide variety of symptoms, including:
- Excessive shivering and trembling
- Dilated pupils
- Cold and pale skin
- Blue or pale gums and inner eyelid
- Stiffened muscles
- Slowed heart rate
- Low blood pressure
- Difficulties with breathing
- Severe lack of energy that often leads to a stupor-like state.
If you notice any of these symptoms, you need to warm up your dog as much as possible and take it to a veterinarian immediately.
How to Keep Your American Bully Warm in Winter?
It’s crucial to take some measures in order to keep your American Bully warm in winter and reduce the risk of it developing any serious health issues
So, here are some of the measures you can take to keep your American Bully in winter:
1. Make Sure Your Dog Has a Warm Place to Sleep
You need to make sure your dog has a warm place to sleep in winter, as it’s usually a lot colder at night.
The dog’s bed should be placed in a warm room away from any windows or drafts, and it should be slightly raised to minimize contact with the cold floor. It’s also recommended to add multiple layers of bedding, thermal blankets, and heated pads in the dog’s bed to make it even warmer.
If you’re looking for recommendations for dog beds, check out my article on the best beds for Pit Bulls here. You’ll definitely find a nice bed for your American Bully to keep it warm and comfy in winter.
2. Make Sure Your Dog Is Eating Enough
You need to make sure your dog is eating enough calories for its size, as this will help it maintain its energy levels and keep warm. Its food should also contain all the nutrients that its body needs to remain healthy.
However, make sure you’re not overfeeding your dog since it will not be exercising as much during the wintertime, and it will put on weight a lot more easily.
3. Make Sure Your Dog Is Drinking Enough Water
Make sure your dog is drinking enough water because prolonged exposure to cold temperatures can cause severe dehydration, which will lead to your dog experiencing various uncomfortable and painful symptoms, such as dry skin and paws, as well as difficulties with peeing.
The dog’s water bowl should be placed in a warm and accessible location at home so your dog can easily drink from it. The water in the bowl should also be of a temperature suitable for drinking.
4. Avoid Going Outside for Extended Periods of Time When It’s Cold
It’s a good idea to minimize going outdoors for extended periods of time when the temperature is cold or avoid it altogether if possible.
If your dog is used to playing or taking walks outside, you can try to find alternative methods to exercise it indoors, such as letting it climb the stairs or play a game of fetch.
5. Dress Your Dog in A Winter Coat and Boots Before Going Outside
If it’s absolutely necessary to go outside for an extended period of time during winter, it’s recommended to dress your dog in a winter coat and boots to protect it and keep it warm.
When choosing a winter coat and boots for your dog, you need to make sure that they’re made of durable, water-proof, and wind-proof materials and that they have multiple layers to provide sufficient insulation and prevent any moisture from soaking through to the dog’s skin.
They should also be easy to put on and take off, as well as fit your dog comfortably without restricting its movement.
Winter Safety Tips for American Bullies
Here are some additional winter safety tips you can follow to protect your American Bully:
Never Leave Your Dog Unsupervised
It’s highly unadvised to leave your dog unsupervised for too long during winter, as it might get into an accident because of the snow.
Make sure to check on your dog regularly, and if you’re not going to be available at home, it’s recommended to hire a dog sitter or ask a trusted friend to come around and check on your dog for you.
Generally, American Bullies can be left alone for up 2 hours when they’re puppies and up to 4 to 6 hours when they’re adults. However, the exact amount of time usually varies from one dog to another depending on whether the dog has developed separation anxiety as well as how often its needs to be fed or taken out to pee.
Make Sure Your Dog Doesn’t Eat Snow
If you’re taking your dog outside during winter, make sure it doesn’t eat any snow, as it will usually contain dirt, toxic chemicals, and street salts which can all be extremely dangerous for your dog to ingest.
Exposure to snow can also put your dog at risk of developing other serious health problems, such as hypothermia and frostbite.
Make Sure Your Dog Doesn’t Get Wet
It’s very dangerous for your dog to get wet when the weather is cold, as this will put it at risk of getting sick with a cold or, in more severe cases, developing hypothermia.
So, if you’re taking your dog outside while it’s raining, you need to make sure your dog is wearing a waterproof coat and boots to keep it as dry as possible. You also need to dry your dog thoroughly when you get home and keep it warm.
Make Sure to Keep Your Dog’s Nails Trimmed
It’s very important to regularly trim your dog’s nails regularly during winter, especially if you live in an area where it snows frequently.
That is because having long nails can be extremely unsafe for your dog as it will cause it to lose its balance and skid on the snowy ground, which could lead to a serious injury.
Make Sure to Regularly Inspect Your Dog’s Paws for Damage
Make sure to regularly inspect your dog’s paws for damage because extremely cold temperatures can cause the dog’s paws to dry and crack, which will lead to a lot of discomfort and pain.
To soothe your dog’s paws and minimize the severity of the damage, you can soak it in warm water, then dry it thoroughly. It’s also recommended to regularly apply some paw wax, Vaseline, or coconut oil on each of the dog’s paws.
Always Be on the Look Out for Any Signs That Your Dog Is Getting Sick
It’s important to monitor your dog’s body language during winter to see how well it’s coping with the cold temperature.
Make sure to be on the lookout for any signs that your dog is getting too cold or getting sick, so you can take immediate action to warm your dog up or seek the necessary medical treatment.
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