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Does my dog need a coat?

1209 Views 7 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  animalover56
I adopted Molly, a 5 year old Border Collie mix (I'm thinking golden or labrador retriever) about a month ago. She is 40 pounds. When she came into the shelter, she had been scratching like a mad dog for a while, because of fleas, so her fur was thin in some areas. Around her tail, under her legs. The flea problem has been resolved and she's not scratching anymore, but her coat still seems a bit thin in some places.

Here's some pictures of her coat:

Sometimes the weather here goes into the 30's and 40's at night. We're in Florida, so this cold weather is usually very sudden.

It was in the low 40's this morning and I just stuck a light fleece coat on her to see how it went. For some reason, she also seemed calmer towards other dogs. (She's currently in training not to be a reactive dog.).. which I thought was interesting.

Anyway, do you think she needs a coat? If so, how cold should it be 30's, 20's. 10's? If I'm being crazy and I shouldn't be putting coats on her at all, tell me, because I'm not sure. I don't want her to feel overheated and uncomfortable either.
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I honestly think its your preference. I put a sweater on my dog before we go outside but she is also a Doxie and only 15lbs and shivers when in the cold. I've seen big dogs with coats.
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Your dog will let you know--shivering, picking up feet, walking on 3 legs--that's a cold dog, & even then, not a disaster if it's temporary.
The calming is interesting though--they sell things called thundershirts to help nervous dogs.
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I agree, do what you think your dog likes. Mine need sweaters/coats as they have very short hair and they're definitely happier when they're comfy. Be it a lightweight shirt, heavy sweater, or combo with their raincoat when it's rainy. It's made the difference between them being happy, responsive and well-behaved and just being in 'let me get home' mode. :)
She'd likely be fine without one, but if you think it helps her then let her wear one.

My boy is a Chi x Dach and has a short single layer coat and has practically no hair on his lower chest and none on his stomach and inner thighs. He wears a coat at night if the weather is in the 50's or lower and we're going to be out for any length of time. If we are just going out for a quick pee break then I don't bother with the coat. During the day it depends on if it's sunny or not. If it is and the weather is in the mid 50's or higher he doesn't need a coat, if it's overcast he does if it's in the mid 50's or lower.
It really varies from dog to dog, you'll know if your dog needs one. As soon as it starts to get chilly here my basset shivers and needs a coat or sweatshirt, he would have been a horrible hunting dog. But my other boy never needs a coat, he has a short double coat.
I honestly think she will be fine. My dog has to wear one because he's a greyhound, and he has no fur or fat. Your dog seems to have both fur and fat so I think she'll be fine:)
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