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Husky with bare leg in the cold weather
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huskyparent posted:
My Siberian Husky loves the outdoors (duh). She has a dog door to go to the fenced in backyard and deck. We live in a cold area, yesterday morning it was -8 degrees; it snowed last night. She likes to sleep outside most nights for several hours at least.

She had knee surgery a few months back and the hair/fur on the leg has not grown back, so the entire leg, except for a few random tufts of hair, is bare. I am wondering whether she feels the cold on that leg and would come inside before getting frostbite. She just doesn't seem bothered by the cold on the leg; when we go for walks every day I am freezing and she is just exploring in the snow; the leg doesn't seem to react to it.

Last night I saw her laying outside with a half inch of snow piled up on top of her entire body, except the bare leg was still bare. So, other than that leg she was completely white.

Do I need to force her to stay indoors at night? When I try this she paces around like an expectant father. I tried putting a child's leg warmer on her leg but that quickly disappeared.
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AMERICAN VETERINARY MEDICAL ASSOCIATION
Sandy Willis, DVM, DACVIM responded:
Hello, Frost bite isn't that common in dogs because of their fur and I live in a warmer climate, but I would be a little concerned about that bare leg. Sometimes hair takes a long time to grow back but I understand your concerns for keeping the dog indoors. I would contact your veterinarian to see their advice and experience in your colder area. Dr. Sandy
 
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huskyparent replied to Sandy Willis, DVM, DACVIM's response:
Hi Dr. Sandy, Thank you for your reply. The funny thing is this morning I noticed that she grew some fur on the inside of her leg (no hair, just fur), but she still has a long way to go for it to cover much of anything.

I guess the big question is, since she goes in and out often would she be smart enough to realize when/if the leg gets cold and come inside.

ken
 
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rohvannyn replied to huskyparent's response:
I wouldn't imagine frostbite would happen too easily because it's her leg, not her toes. There is plenty of blood flowing to keep the leg warm enough, and it would lose heat but not be small and hard to warm up like fingers, noses, ears and toes. If she had damage to the leg, it would show by her having a herder time using the leg. But the inherent motion of the leg should help a lot.


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