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My dog, Kolchak, is pretty much always cold.
He has no clue why I insist on keep the apartment so cold or why he had to be born in a place that gets cold, but he thinks it’s straight up crap. Since Felix is always warm and I love a cozy blanket, the temperature up in here isn’t likely to change anytime soon. That’s why we have a few tried and true favourite ways to help my cold dog stay warm.
1. It’s Sweater Weather
Ok, so I know what *some* of you guys are going to say “Dogs don’t wear clothes” and other assorted thing designed to make me feel crazy, but Kolchak legit LOVES wearing a sweater. When it’s snowing, he actually cries until I put his sweater on. What that boy wants, that boy gets, so if he needs a dog sweater to feel cozy warm, he’s going to get one. We have a whole tiny dog closet full of clothes, but I love his stretch fleece from Gold Paw Series. Aside from being really affordable, it’s simple, unfussy and it doesn’t interfere with Kol’s ability to go about his day. It fits under his harness or his coat, it doesn’t bunch up and make him uncomfortable, it’s like a second, warmer skin.
2. Bottle It Up
One of my favourite ways to warm up when I’m chilly is to put my feet on a hot water bottle, so it’s no surprise Kol loves to lay up against one. We use a cheap one from the drug store with a cover because Kol is knee high to a pig’s and he doesn’t need it very large, but if you have a big dog, this oversize 3.2 qt water bottle would be perfect. Just be safe with this, OK? Don’t use boiling water (I use water the same temp as a cozy bath), don’t fill it more than 3/4 full, fully tighten the lid, make sure your dog lays NEXT to it, not ON it and NEVER let them chew it. This solution is not a good fit for every pet, so use your judgement here to decide if it’s right for supervised use by YOUR pet.
3. Blankies. Blankies EVERYWHERE.
You guys, we live in a <1000 sq. ft. apartment and there are three of us, but holy man, we have enough blankets for you and everyone you know to come over for a really cozy party. Seriously, I can see four from where I’m sitting. I know there’s like three in the living room and another heap in bed. You have to look before you sit down around here because any blankie is liable to be hiding a slumbering puggle. He has a type too: Kol prefers a thick, plush, silky micro-fibre fleece blanket, but not like a standard polar fleece blanket. Sherpa backing optional. What can I say? The boy has good taste.
4. Get their bed up off the floor (and/or invest in a thick, cozy bed)
OK, I’m not a huge fan or beds on the floor in the first place. I feel like they need a frame. But the fact is that heat rises and the floor is likely to be the chillest spot in your house – even if it’s carpeted. Getting your bed up off the floor or buying a squishy bed with a thick foam inside will keep your dog cozy.
5. Heated Beds & Blankies
So this is a pricey, extreme solution for chronically cold dogs, like my Kolchak. We bought his Nana a heated blanket for Christmas and I’m pretty sure that no one loves that thing more than he does. It’s like a moth to a flame, y’all. He seems to have a sixth sense for when it’s plugged in and he has no shame in being a blankie hog. Just like with the water bottle, this one requires a bit of judgement, as it’s a terrible idea for dogs who chew things, spill things or potty in the house or on their bed. For dogs like Kol that just want to lay in the glorious warmth? It’s perfection.
Is your dog always cold? What’s your go-to solution to warm them up?
Got a hot dog? Stay tuned. Next week we’ll share all the ways we keep Felix cool.