The American Bully is a thick, muscular, and overall tough looking breed of dog. Many would think by just looking at the American Bully they would be warm all year round. This dense stature can be deceiving. I learned this first hand when I first brought home my American Bully puppy.
Do American Bullies get cold in winter? As a whole the American Bully does get cold in the winter. In fact they get cold much faster than many other breeds. The American Bully has such a short coat, and low stance that winter weather can be quite uncomfortable. Even for short periods of time.
I first brought my American Bully puppy home when he was 3 months old and we were in the last few weeks of winter. There was still snow on the ground, and it was below freezing for the first few days. This weather and snow got a mixed review from my American Bully puppy.
Being the playful young dog that he was, snow was super fun and interesting to play in, but only for a couple minutes. Soon my American Bully was pulling me back toward the front door to go back inside. Not a surprise in the least. Luckily I have had many years of winter training myself and know how to prepare for our first full winter.
In this post I will go over some great tips on how to keep your American Bully safe, warm, and able to enjoy the winter months. Depending on the area you live in, winter can last a while. So it’s best to know how you can take care of your American Bully during those dark, cold days. Let’s dive in!
Can American Bully Tolerate Cold Weather?
As a general rule an American Bully can only tolerate cold weather for short periods of time. Even when adequately dressed American Bullies will get cold fairly easily. American Bullies will feel cold first in areas like their ears, paws, and nose first. These areas are particularly prone to frostbite.
American Bullies, and Bully breeds in general, are known to not display signs of pain or discomfort as readily as other breeds. It is important that you pay attention to your dog in cold weather to ensure things like hypothermia and frostbite don’t become an issue.
Other factors such as age, size, coat color, and health can determine the level of tolerance an American Bully can have in cold weather. Each dog will be slightly different in their ability to tolerate cold temperatures based on these factors.
Older American Bullies that have some health issues, with a smaller build, and less fat and muscle will feel the cold much easier. Dogs with lighter colored coats will also absorb less heat on sunny days than American Bullies with darker coats. Each of these factors should be considered when out in cold weather.
How Cold Is Too Cold For An American Bully?
As a general rule when winter temperatures go to around 45° F/7°C your American Bully will begin to feel a bit uncomfortable. When temperatures go down below the freezing mark of 0° F/-17°C this will be too cold for an American Bully. At these temperatures hypothermia and frostbite become real dangers.
It’s imperative that you monitor your American Bully when outside in this type of cold weather. When their skin is cold to touch, red or swollen skin begins to appear, or they develop a pale complexion, you are seeing signs of frostbite that should be treated immediately.
Major health problems can result from hypothermia in your American Bully when they have prolonged exposure to cold. Signs of fatigue, weakness, and lack of alertness are the early signs of hypothermia onset. Immediately get your dog inside to warm up when these symptoms appear.
On cold days between 45° F/7°C and 20° F/-7°C adequate protections should be provided for your American Bully. Things like sweaters and jackets should be worn to keep them protected from the cold. Additionally things like boots can be worn to help protect their paws from cold, snowy sidewalks.
On the very cold days of 0° F/-17°C or colder, the outdoors should be avoided for any prolonged period of time. Short potty breaks should be the only time your American Bully spends outside during these extremely cold winter days. The risks to your dog’s health in these temperatures can be severe.
Can American Bullies Stay Outside In The Winter?
As a whole American Bullies cannot and should stay outside in the winter. Even when provided with shelter in the form of a dog house, the winter temperatures are far too cold for an American Bully to tolerate. Never leave your American Bully outside, unattended during the winter months.
Aside from the fact that American Bullies are sensitive to the cold and do very poorly living outside in the winter, there are other reasons you should not keep them outside. The American Bully is a companion animal that loves being with family.
Keeping your dog outside away from the pack is not an ideal situation for your American Bully. This isolation can lead to behavioral problems such as separation anxiety, stress related destruction, and territorial aggression. I cover all this and more in the article below.
How To Keep Your American Bully Warm In The Winter
Keeping your American Bully warm in those cold winter months is important. Winter can last for months in some areas and be extremely cold at times. Being prepared to keep your American Bully safe from the cold and able to enjoy being outside comes down to these helpful tips.
Dress For The Weather
American Bullies need a good sweater or jacket in the winter months. Whether they are going for a quick potty break or a walk, an added layer of protection is important to keep your dog warm, dry, and comfortable.
Canada Pooch is one of the best dog coat companies on the market and highly recommended for your winter jacket needs. This Canada Pooch parka is one of the top rated jackets on Amazon and comes in sizes to fit your Bully.
For some of the best winter jackets, boots, and clothing check out the Pibbles & Bits resource and reviews page below.
Resources & Review - The Best Dog Jackets, Clothing, Pajamas, Thundershirts, Bagpacks & Boots
Keep Outside Activity Short
Even on the more mild of winter days prolonged exposure to the cold can become a problem for your American Bully. Keep your outside activities in the winter short. Even if you take breaks from fun outside to come indoors to warm up for a few minutes.
My American Bully puppy loves to play in the snow. He thinks it is the most fun and entertaining thing around during the winter months. But too much of a good thing can be harmful. My Pocket Bully is short and the snow often times up to his belly. This can quickly make him cold and uncomfortable, so our snow adventures are short and sweet.
Walks during the winter months should be much shorter as well. This might mean that for more active dogs you will need to take more walks at different times during the day. Instead of the 30 minute walk in the morning, you may need to do 2 separate walks of 15 minutes.
Monitor Your American Bully
Keep an eye on your American Bully when you are outside walking or playing. They may be having a blast playing in the snow and frocklicking around, but they can become too cold fairly quickly. Things like shivering, pale skin, hold up cold paws, and teeth chattering can all be signs they have had enough and need to get inside.
Monitor your American Bully in the winter months to ensure you are never too far from home to get them out of the cold. I always play it safe and limit the time my American Bully spends outside, rather than push him to the point of shivering. Each dog will be different, so know the signs and watch your dog.
Provide A Warm Space
When inside during the winter it is important to keep a nice warm space for your American Bully. Whether they are just coming in from the cold, or lounging around the house all day, a nice warm spot with blankets and even a space heater is a great way to keep them warm.
Even the best homes can get a little cold and drafty during the winter months. I like to keep a bunch of warm blankets setup so that my American Bully can curl up and warm up whenever he feels the need. This is also a great opportunity for some cuddles with your American Bully. Warm your dog and your heart all at the same time.
Keep Them Comfortable
Using a well insulated and elevated dog bed is a great way to keep your American Bully comfortable and warm during the winter. The floor of your home can be a little chilly in the winter months. By providing your dog a soft, warm, and comfortable dog bed this keeps them off the floor and feeling cozy.
There are a ton of great options available online for dog beds. One of the best on the market is the Bully Bed. Extremely warm, comfortable, and high quality with their 20 year warranty. I would highly recommend the Bully Bed for any American Bully owner.
Resources & Reviews - The Best Dog Beds & Dog Blankets
Ensure Their Health – Feet To Food
Keeping your American Bully healthy and happy during the winter months is crucial. Cold weather can be hard on even the fittest of dogs. Ensuring you are taking proper care of their nutrition and physical well being is important.
Simple things like wiping your American Bullies feet to remove things like road salts and sand can prevent them from getting sick when licking their feet. It also helps prevent dry, cracked, and irritated feet.
Pet MD 3-in-1 Dog Paw Balm
Pet MD 3-in-1 Dog Paw Balm is fantastic for your dogs dry spots, like their nose, elbows and paws. The blend of 12 natural oils, butters and pet safe essential oils is excellent when treating and preventing dry cracked skin. It’s also not harmful if ingested.
My Staffy and I live in a cold dry climate for a good portion of the year, and the Pet MD Paw Balm has been a life saver for my Staffy’s poor dry nose. A dab of the balm on her little snout absorbs quickly and leaves her comfortable and moisturized all winter long.
Ensuring your American Bully is getting enough calories and nutritional value in their diet is also something that needs to be monitored. Dogs can burn off more calories trying to keep themselves warm and require additional food to maintain optimal health. Consult with your vet to be sure you are feeding your dog the right amount of food each day.
It is also possible for your American Bully to gain too much weight during the winter months due to inactivity. Some days it can be hard to get out and exercise. Cold weather can prevent those longer walks and trips to the park.
Find indoor activities that can help your American Bully burn off some energy and stay in good shape. Obesity can become an issue for dogs that are lacking exercise and eating too much. Consult with your vet about your dogs nutritional needs and make time to give them some indoor exercise.
Keep Your American Bully On Leash
When out walking your American Bully or visiting an off-leash park area, it is my recommendation you always keep them on leash in the winter. If your dog decides to bolt after something, or becomes lost, this can become a real serious problem fast.
Keeping your American Bully on leash in the winter will ensure they cannot run away from you and find themselves stuck outside in the cold. Hypothermia and frostbite don’t take long to occur so it’s always best to play it safe.
Even though the American Bully does get cold in the winter, and fair quicker than most, doesn’t mean you can’t still have fun. Keeping your American Bully during the winter is a matter of preparation, watching the temperatures, and getting creative with alternative activities.
Keeping your American Bully safe and comfortable in the cold winter temperatures is a top priority. By following the tips provided in this post you can be sure your American Bully can tolerate those cold days.
Be sure to check out the resource pages below for all your winter gear and accessories you will need for your American Bully.
PIBBLES & BITS TOP PICKS
King Komb DeShedding Tool – One of the best dog brushes on the market. I use the King Komb each and every week with my Pibbles. Easy to use and even easier to clean.
Wahl Dry Skin Oatmeal Shampoo – Smells great, cleans great, and best of all keeps my dog’s skin and coat looking and feeling amazing. Wahl Dry Skin Oatmeal Shampoo keeps my Pibbles skin moisturized like no other.
Earth Rated Dog Wipes – Dog wipes are an essential to keep on hand, and nothing beats Earth Rated. Hypoallergenic, biodegradable, and durable. I keep these dog wipes in the house and the car for everyday use.
Kong Extreme – Kongs are one of my most used tools to give my dogs some mental stimulation and something tough to chew. Kong Extremes are as tough as they come and will give your Pibble the entertainment they crave.
Outward Hound Food Puzzle – Outward Hound food puzzles are the best in the industry. Available from beginner to advanced. These are an excellent way to challenge and mentally stimulate your dog.
BeneBone Dog Chew – The toughest dog chew around. My dogs absolutely love the bacon flavor and peanut butter flavor BeneBone. These will keep your toughest chewers busy for weeks, if not months and years.
BarkBox Super Chewer – Variety is the spice of life, and BarkBox Super Chewer is the perfect way to keep your dog engaged. New treats, toys, and chews each and every month that your super chewer will love.
iCrate Dog Crate – The iCrate is my absolute top recommendation for dog crates. I use this for both my dogs and love the sturdy, easy to store, and versatile adjustable panel. You need the iCrate in your life.
HiKiss Long Training Lead – Recall training and puppy training outdoors requires a long training lead. My favorite to use is the HiKiss long training lead. Available in a range of lengths to suit your long lead training needs.