• Thank you for creating an account on Hunt Talk! We require that all new users contribute at least 10 posts before gaining the ability to start new threads. Once you have made 10 posts, you will be able to start new threads in the forum.

How to Keep a Dog Warm?

flux

New member
Joined
Apr 27, 2020
Messages
14
Location
Colorado Springs, CO
This is a question related to mid/late season big game hunting with dogs…

I have a German Shepherd (short but thick coat) that usually joins me on all outdoor adventures. I used to do a lot of hiking all throughout winter and the cold never seemed to bother him as long as we kept moving. Now that I started hunting, he gets noticeably cold while stationary glassing if the temperature is below 20 degrees.

Any tips or product suggestions to keep him warm while stationary in the backcountry? I started carrying a foam sleeping pad to give him some insulation from the ground but it is not enough. I am considering finding a used puffy jacket or sleeping bag to drape over him. I have seen a lot of vests made for dogs, I could be wrong but they just don’t appear to be as insulating as gear made for human.
 

OntarioHunter

Member
Joined
Sep 11, 2020
Messages
46
Your dog simply is not used to being outside. Get out more and that will help. The neoprene vests for waterfowl dogs are great and actually might be too much insulation for your dog. I have one for my Lab when we're goose hunting but seldom need it. Tried one for my less insulated little French Brittany for cold weather pheasant hunting but had to give it up. Burrs got underneath and she'd tear at the vest trying to get at them. I have a Skid Plate for her now that provides more protection than warmth but we are on the move all the time so cold is not so much an issue.
 

flux

New member
Joined
Apr 27, 2020
Messages
14
Location
Colorado Springs, CO
Your dog simply is not used to being outside. Get out more and that will help. The neoprene vests for waterfowl dogs are great and actually might be too much insulation for your dog. I have one for my Lab when we're goose hunting but seldom need it. Tried one for my less insulated little French Brittany for cold weather pheasant hunting but had to give it up. Burrs got underneath and she'd tear at the vest trying to get at them. I have a Skid Plate for her now that provides more protection than warmth but we are on the move all the time so cold is not so much an issue.

My dog and I spend as much time outside as possible but we only have 1 Colorado winter under our belts (we just moved from Georgia in 2019). It is good to know his cold tolerance may improve over time, I had not considered this.

I understand neoprene is a great insulator while submerged in water but I am looking for something to be used on dry land, to trap body heat and block wind.

Thank you for taking the time to comment.
 

JeffJ

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 23, 2019
Messages
912
Location
Missouri
Could always try a parka style coat for your pup, something like the Duluth fire hose, Hurtta, etc.
 

Boomerusaf

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 14, 2018
Messages
3,032
Location
The Driftless Region
Be sure that the neoprene doesn't rub on the armpits, if you go that route.

Maybe an emergency blanket? They are endothermic so I would assume this might work. I've never big game hunted with a dog but I'd start there.
 

OntarioHunter

Member
Joined
Sep 11, 2020
Messages
46
Neoprene is excellent insulation for them on land. I hunt geese almost exclusively in fields. At the end of the day when I peel off the vest, the dog is VERY warm underneath. That time of year the dogs are getting plenty wet from dew in the morning. I'm sure yours will too. The vests are easily trimmed to fit around armpits.
 
Top