Is my pet cold?

The lovely thing about South Africa is that our winters aren’t as cold as those of some countries – like in Europe. In general, most of our winters are mild compared to theirs, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have cold days. And, just like some people feel the cold more than others, some animals might be cold when others are not. So, how do we know if our pets are cold, or not? Here are a few guidelines regarding our furry friends’ temperature comfort zones.


Ideal room temperatures Generally between 20 and 25°C, depending on the breed of dog and his coat. Huskies and longhaired breeds enjoy cooler temperatures, while short-haired dogs, puppies, and sick or frail dogs prefer warmer temperatures. Take note at which temperature your dog feels comfortable.

Feeling cold when

  • He shivers or shakes.
  • He’s all curled up with his nose and tail tucked in.
  • His ears feel cold to the touch.
  • He whines.
  • He looks for a warm spot to lie down.

Warm him up

  • Give him a warm bed and a blanket to sleep on.
  • Cover him with a blanket.
  • Cuddle with him.
  • Put a doggy jersey or jacket on him.
  • Increase the room temperature.

Feeling hot when

  • He pants or breathes rapidly.
  • He drools excessively.
  • He looks for a cooler spot.
  • He refuses to put on a jacket.
  • His heartbeat is fast and irregular.

Would you like to read the rest of article about cats, birds and chinchillas, get the June 2022 copy of Animaltalk magazine from retailers now, or order a printed or digital copy from


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