10 Hot Tips to Keep Your Senior Dog Warm and Protected This Winter



Winter is not even here yet, but I know Red is already starting to feel the cold. This summer wasn’t great (weatherwise), so it feels like she hasn’t been without a sweater in months. In this article I’m going to talk about the ways to keep your senior dog warm and protected this winter.

10 hot tips

Warm clothing

keeping an old dog warm in the winter


Your dog may be feeling the cold more than she used to, so why not buy her a sweater, or nice warm coat to wear on your walks, or even indoors if you think she needs it. Try putting it in the dryer for a couple of minutes to warm it up before going out (if it is suitable for the dryer of course!).

If you’d like to try crocheting your own dog coat, I’ve included a video tutorial. Believe me, I don’t have much of a clue when it comes to crocheting, but this is so easy, anyone can do it, and I do mean anyone.

Where your dog sleeps


Red sleeping on comforter

Wherever your dog sleeps, make sure there’s no draught, and she’s nice and toasty.

Wrap her up!

how my senior dog stays warm in the winter


I leave a blanket on every dog bed just in case Red gets cold. If she is, she wraps herself up in it. Consider leaving a blanket on your dog’s bed.

Keep the bed warm

dog on heated bed

Doggie heating mats and electric blankets can be added to your dog’s bed, or self heating mats if you don’t like the idea of electric ones. Hot water bottles can work too!

Don’t let your dog freeze outside


insulated dog house

If your dog spends a lot of time in the yard, consider getting her a dog house, and insulate it with straw so she has a warm place to go. If she lives out there, the shelter should have an overhang so snow and rain do not get in, a sloped roof and heating. Better yet, let her join the family and live indoors.

Elevate the bed off a cold floor


tips to keep your old dog warm in winter

Hardwood, concrete and tile floors can be quite cold in the winter, so if your dog’s bed is on that type of flooring, try getting a couple of carpet squares, towels or blankets to put under her bed, so it is not in direct contact with the cold floor.

No shaving in the winter


shaggy dog

You may like your dog shaved pretty close in the summer months, but consider leaving her hair longer in the winter for insulation.

Don’t go outside if you’re wet!!


Red drying off after bath

If you bathe your dog at home, don’t let her out until you are sure she is completely dry.

Paw protection


If there is snow and ice where you live, booties will protect your dog’s paws from the cold and salt. If she won’t wear them (like mine won’t!!), paw wax will work too. At least for Red it did!!

That frozen lake may not really be frozen


dog on frozen lake

Looks can be deceiving, and deadly! Don’t go near frozen lakes or ponds, because they may not actually be frozen.

10 Hot Tips to Keep Your Senior Dog Warm and Protected This Winter – conclusion

Keeping your senior dog warm this winter, is just one of the many things we can do to make their lives as comfortable as possible.

If you live in a cold climate, what do you do to keep your dog nice and comfy? Why not share your tips in the comments below or on my Facebook page.




  1. Matthew

    I couldn’t agree with you more, Hindy! Especially the smaller your dogs are and the shorter hair they have, the more important it is to ensure they stay warm. My parents have Miniature Pinschers and they starts shivering from coldness very easily. Even with warm clothing they start shivering from coldness during cold winter days if they stay outside for too long. Usually they will try to avoid wearing clothes but clothes are necessarily to keep them warm when it’s cold outside.

    1. Hindy Pearson (Post author)

      Hello Matthew, thanks for the comment. My dog Red is part Min Pin and she also shivers quite easily. Maybe it’s a breed thing!! When it’s really cold out she wears a sweater and a coat. I took her to Canada in the winter, and that was a nightmare. It was a struggle to get her outside at all. I can relate to what your parents are experiencing.

  2. Dinh

    Some great tips to consider!
    It is getting colder and I see that smaller dogs especially are in a need of some warm clothing. I was at the Tompkin Square Halloween Dog Parade in NYC this weekend with my kids and saw quite a few little dogs shivering and shaking because they were in thin outfits for the parade. Luckily, they had thoughtful owners and they came prepared with blankets to wrap them!

    Thanks for sharing the 10 tips on keeping your senior dog warm this winter.

    1. Hindy Pearson (Post author)

      Hi Dinh, I appreciate you taking the time to comment. You have to wonder why some people don’t put sweaters or coats on their dogs, especially if they’re elderly. We feel the cold, so why do we think they’re unaffected (unless of course we’re talking about dogs who were bred to handle the cold). My dog Red doesn’t have much fur, and as she gets older she really feels the cold. She wears a sweater in the house at certain times of the year otherwise you see her shivering.

  3. Gino

    Hey Hindy, great advice, i feel like i have been abandoning my dog with your tips on how to treat him well 🙁 but i have to say your article has woken me up, i love the paw protection he will look so cute with them 🙂

    1. Hindy Pearson (Post author)

      Hi Gino, thanks, glad you liked the article. I’m pretty sure you’re doing a great job but in case you’re not, lot’s of help available here!! They do look cute in the booties, but none of my charges ever cared for them.

  4. Rawl

    These are great ideas for keeping your dog warm in the winter. Using a heating pad or hot water bottle in their beds never occurred to me. I’ve seen doggy sweaters but because I live in the desert putting a sweater on them has never been a thought. But I crochet so I could make one of my own.

    Great ideas Hindy. Thanks.

    1. Hindy Pearson (Post author)

      Hi Rawl, thanks! When you have a senior dog, your life seems to revolve around finding ways to make them comfortable. I crochet a little, nothing fancy, but found the easiest video on youtube and I’ve been stockpiling for winter. If you’re interested in the link, let me know.


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