Are Beagles Good in Cold Weather? A Cold Climate Owner's Guide
Understanding Beagles and Cold Weather
As a beagle owner myself, it’s not uncommon for other dog owners to ask me if beagles are good in cold weather. While beagles are known for their short, but thick double coat, it’s important to understand how cold weather affects them.
It’s important to note that while beagles can handle colder temperatures, they are not suited for extreme cold climates or freezing temperatures. They are more suited for mild cold weather, such as the fall and spring seasons. Or the winters of moderately cold climates like the United States Midwest – which is where I’m located.
Beagles also have a tendency to get cold easily, especially if they are wet. This is because their coat is not completely waterproof, so it’s important to keep them dry during wet and snowy weather.
To keep your beagle warm during the colder months, it’s important to provide them with proper shelter and bedding. A warm, dry place to sleep and a cozy blanket can help keep them comfortable.
In addition, it’s important to monitor your beagle for signs of hypothermia and overexposure to cold, such as shivering, lethargy, and a decrease in body temperature. If you suspect your beagle is experiencing hypothermia, it’s important to seek veterinary care immediately.
Overall, while beagles can handle colder temperatures, it’s important to understand their limitations and provide them with proper care during the colder months. Let’s discuss in more detail the question, are beagles good in cold weather?
Are Beagles Good in Cold Weather? Physical Attributes of Beagles
Body Temperature and Heat Regulation
As an active dog breed, the Beagle’s body temperature is naturally higher than humans. Their body temperature ranges from 100.5 to 102.5°F, which is of course higher than the normal human body temperature of 98.6°F. This higher body temperature helps them to maintain their body heat and stay warm in cold weather.
Beagles, like all dogs, have an efficient heat regulation system that allows them to adapt to different temperatures. They can increase or decrease their body heat by panting, sweating through their paw pads, or adjusting their body position. However, this system has its limits, and if the temperature drops too low, dogs may struggle to maintain their body heat.
Beagle's Coat Type
Beagles have a short coat that is easy to maintain, but it doesn’t provide as much insulation in cold weather as compared to dogs with longer and/or thicker coats. The short fur makes them more susceptible to cold temperatures, and they may need extra protection to stay warm.
During winter, you can supplement your Beagle’s natural fur coat with a commercial doggy coat to prevent excess heat loss. A warm coat can help to keep your Beagle comfortable and protect them from the cold temperatures, snow and slush.
Beagle Size and Weight Considerations
Beagles are small dogs, with a body weight that ranges from 20 to 35 pounds. Smaller dogs tend to lose body heat faster than larger dogs, making them more susceptible to cold weather. However, Beagles are a sturdy breed, and their muscular body helps them to generate and retain body heat.
All of this heat generation comes in from a high-quality, protein rich diet. So be sure to get your Beagle the proper nutrition they need.
Larger breeds may have an advantage in cold weather due to their larger body size, but Beagles can adapt to cold weather with proper care and attention. It’s important to monitor your Beagle’s behavior in cold weather and provide them with the necessary protection to prevent any cold weather related issues. Bring them inside the house or warm shelter at the earliest sign of discomfort.
Indoor Beagle or Outdoor Beagle?
City and suburban dwelling beagle owners will most likely contain their beagle indoors, hanging out with their owners in the house or as an apartment dog for all hours of the day. Cold climate indoor beagles only worry about the cold temperatures or snow when they go out to play or take a walk, beagles are well adapted to live this lifestyle.
Outdoor beagles, or ones that spend most of their time outside in a pen, or larger cage are more exposed to nature’s elements, especially in colder climates and low temperatures. Outdoor dogs must have a safe and warm shelter to turn to when the weather conditions become too harsh.
A covered shelter with a safe source of heat and fresh water is most ideal during winter months. If you have several outdoor beagles, provide plenty of space for the pack to hunker down together, they adore their packmates and will huddle up together for warmth when the temperatures dip. Remember to provide plenty of fresh, clean, unfrozen water to keep your outdoor beagles hydrated!
Effects of Cold on Beagles Health
Potential Health Problems
As with any living creature, exposure to cold weather can cause a variety of health problems for beagles. During the winter months, beagles are at risk for developing respiratory infections and other illnesses that can affect their immune system. This can be especially problematic for senior dogs or those with pre-existing health conditions.
Beagles can also experience issues with their body temperature regulation. When exposed to colder temperatures, beagles may experience mild hypothermia, which can cause shivering, lethargy, and a decrease in body heat. In severe cases, hypothermia can be life-threatening and require immediate medical attention.
Signs of Hypothermia
It is important for beagle owners to be aware of the signs of hypothermia in their pets. Mild hypothermia can cause shivering, lethargy, and a decrease in body heat. In more severe cases, beagles may experience difficulty breathing, a slow heart rate, and even loss of consciousness.
If you suspect that your beagle is experiencing hypothermia, it is important to seek veterinary care immediately. In the meantime, you can help your pet by providing a warm, dry environment and wrapping them in a blanket or towel to help raise their body temperature.
Overall, while beagles can handle colder weather better than some breeds, it is important to be aware of the potential health risks and take steps to keep your pet safe and comfortable during the colder months.
Protecting Your Beagle from the Cold
As a responsible beagle owner, it’s important to take extra precautions and care during the winter months. Here are some tips on how to protect your beagle from the cold.
Appropriate "Clothing" and Accessories
One of the best ways to protect your beagle from the cold is by outfitting them with appropriate clothing and accessories. This includes dog boots to protect their paws from cold water and snow, as well as a beagle winter coat or other protective clothing to provide extra warmth. You can find these items at your local pet store or online. Amazon has a huge selection of these accessories!
Here is the coat we use and absolutely love! Check the price on Amazon by clicking this link or the image below – we may earn a commission to keep this website up and running – at no cost to you!
Outdoor Precautions for Beagles in Cold Weather
When taking your beagle outside in the winter, it’s important to take extra care. Make sure to limit their time outdoors, especially in wet weather conditions. When they do go outside, check their paws for any signs of cold or damage to their paw pads. If they have been in contact with cold water, make sure to dry them off thoroughly.
Additionally, make sure your beagle has access to warm indoor spaces when they need it. This can include a heating pad, warm blanket, or a warm place to rest. And remember, outdoor exercise should be limited during winter weather conditions to avoid any potential health risks.
By taking these extra precautions and providing your beagle with the necessary clothing and accessories, you can help protect them from the cold and ensure their comfort and safety during the winter months.
Beagle's Exercise and Activity in Cold Weather
As an active breed, Beagles require plenty of exercise to stay healthy and happy. As I always say, 30-60 minutes per day is a good place to start! When winter approaches, it’s important to find ways to keep your Beagle active and engaged despite the colder temperatures.
One simple way to provide exercise for your Beagle is to take them on winter outdoor walks or runs. However, it’s important to use common sense and avoid potential dangers such as icy sidewalks or roads.
Another good idea is to provide your Beagle with puzzle toys or other mentally stimulating activities to keep them occupied indoors. This can help them burn off energy and stay active even when it’s too cold to go outside.
It’s important to keep your Beagle active and engaged in a safe and healthy way during the colder months. With a little creativity and effort, you can help your Beagle stay happy and healthy all year round.
Beagles are great dogs, that’s for sure. They can handle cold climates quite well too, within reason. I wouldn’t recommend getting a beagle if you live in Alaska or northern Canada, but for many of the colder climates in North American a beagle can definitely withstand a little bit of cold weather.
Our beagle can be hesitant at first to go outside in the winter months, but once she does she absolutely loves playing in the fresh snow! Make sure to get your pup plenty of exercise, whether it’s outside in the cold temps for a walk or inside playing around.
For outdoor walks, I highly recommend using a harness for your daily runs and walks. They reduce tugging and pulling, while providing a sense of security for your pup. Check out great article on some of our favorite harnesses for beagles!