What You Need to Know to Keep Your Dog Outside

Updated on May 23, 2019
DrMark1961 profile image

Dr. Mark is a veterinarian. He has been working with dogs for more than 40 years.

Siberians enjoy being outside.
Siberians enjoy being outside. | Source

Is it Okay to Leave Your Dog Outside All of the Time?

This issue has been hotly debated as of late and the people who have tried to give honest answers have been accused of animal cruelty and neglect.

Leave a comment if you disagree.

I have even read a quiz given by breeders, in which those potential adopters who think it is okay to leave some breeds outside are eliminated from their waiting lists. What breeders need to do is find out which potential owners are going to lock their dogs into a crate for their convenience.

Dogs enjoy being outside, and many dogs can live in in the yard all of the time. Or do you think that being shut in a crate for a crime you did not commit better than being outside?

It is okay to keep huskies outside.
It is okay to keep huskies outside. | Source

Does Your Dog Think it is Okay to Be Outside?

If you are wearing a fur coat, being locked in a car sitting in the sun or trapped in a house with the furnace blasting are both uncomfortable, and potentially dangerous.

And, despite what certain people claim, you can generalize at times. A Chihuahua would not do well living outside in North Dakota. A Siberian Husky does not do well living outside in the hot and humid summer of South Carolina.

Those are generalizations, based on breeds and prevailing weather conditions.

If a Siberian Husky is used to being indoors, but is put outside, that is not the same thing as living outside all of the time. This breed does not need to be brought inside during cold spells. It is cruel to take a dog that is adapted and built for the cold, and able to handle the cold, and then to make her come inside just enough so that she will start to become accustomed to the heat, then thrust her back out the next time someone comes over to visit.

That is the type of neurotic human behavior that a dog cannot handle. Unless one of my dogs was sick, I would never have forced him or her to come into my house.

Some breeds of dog prefer to live outside in the cold.

Livestock guard dog breeds similar to the Great Pyrenees were bred to be outside.
Livestock guard dog breeds similar to the Great Pyrenees were bred to be outside. | Source

Which Dog Breeds Can Be Kept Outside?

All of the livestock guard dogs that are working will do better if kept outside. If you ask a Great Pyrenees, Komodor, Kuvasz, Anatolian Shepherd, Caucasian Ovcharka, or any of the other guard dogs to come inside at times, and then go out at other times to guard the flock, it is hard on the dog´s health. A dry area of the barn can be available so that the dog can get out of the rain but, other than during a storm, he will probably not even use it.

The sled dogs with thick fur coats can be kept outside. Siberian Huskies, Alaskan Malamutes, Samoyeds, Alaskan Huskies, and other sled dogs will all do okay. Thousands of sled dog drivers across the Arctic keep these dogs outside. Amazingly enough, they are still able to perform and run races like the 1100 mile long Iditarod. You can logically infer that they are also not being abused.

Many sheep herding dogs are going to do well outside. The German Shepherd Dog and others like him have a coat that is meant to stand bad weather. As long as they have shelter, they can do fine.

Some other breeds like Tibetan Mastiffs, Bernese Mountain Dogs, Newfoundlands, and Saint Bernards all do okay outside.

If you decide to keep one of these dogs inside, do so consistently, not whenever you feel in the mood or you think the night might be too cold.

That sort of behavior is not good for the health of the dog.

This breed of dog should not be kept outside in the snow and freezing rain. That is a generalization.
This breed of dog should not be kept outside in the snow and freezing rain. That is a generalization. | Source

Which Dog Breeds Should Not Be Left Outside?

Any of the small dog breeds, or even the medium sized dogs with short coats, should not be left outside. Little dogs like Chihuahuas, Maltese, and Yorkshire Terriers can freeze to death, no matter how good the dog house.

This Caucasian Ovcharka can be left outside.
This Caucasian Ovcharka can be left outside. | Source

Does Your Outside Dog Need a Kennel With Food and Water?

Shelter should always be provided. A big kennel is a great alternative for times when you cannot be there, and a dog should always have a place he can retreat to in inclement weather. At times the shelter your provide will not be accepted. During the harshest cold spell, with the wind blowing and snow falling, my Siberian Huskies would prefer to be outside in a snow drift, their bodies curled up under a drift and their noses protected by their bushy tails.

During rain or thunder, the dogs would take advantage of the shelter.

Food should be provided in adequate amounts to keep the dog in good shape. A dog that is kept outside in the cold will have extra caloric requirements and should be fed extra, and given a diet high in fat. (Many sled dog drivers give salmon; I used chicken necks which are naturally wrapped in fat.) Does that mean he needs to be fed free choice, with his food available 24/7? No, the food can still be given in regular meals.

Water should be provided throughout the day. If the dog´s water freezes during the night he is not going to die of dehydration. Anyone who tells you that this is going to happen is trying to scare you by making inflammatory statements.

It is not cruel for a dog to go without water during the middle of the night when he is sleeping. If this were cruel, all of those writers who suggest puppies be housetrained by taking away their water in the evening should also be prosecuted for cruelty.

If you are not going to go out and provide your dog with water throughout the day there are electric water heaters available. A water heater does not excuse you from taking your dog out and exercising her.

Can Dogs Be Left Outside Without Toys or Other Dogs?

No. Dogs are social animals and it is not right to leave them outside without livestock to watch, other dogs to play with, toys to chew on, or humans to interact with.

Leaving a dog locked up alone in a garage, no matter what the weather conditions, is a horrible thing to do and will lead to excessive barking, chewing, and other abnormalities.

If you want to leave your dog locked up outside just so that you do not have to interact with her, you should not have a dog.

Determining is a mixed breed dog can be outside takes some common sense.
Determining is a mixed breed dog can be outside takes some common sense. | Source

I prefer not to leave any dog alone at night. My dogs sleep in my bedroom, on the floor, but if I had five or six to take care of, I would probably leave them outside in one of my kennels.

Dogs are not humans. If you are really interested in doing what your dog prefers, do not force all dogs to live inside all of the time, and do not force a dog with a thin coat to spend his life at the end of a chain or rope. Both things are just as cruel as locking them in a crate at your convenience.

It is okay to leave dogs outside. Yes, I am writing this for you.

Can You Leave Your Dog Outside?

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Would these dogs be happier sitting by the fire?
Would these dogs be happier sitting by the fire? | Source

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.

Questions & Answers

  • I am a nurse working 12 hour night shifts. I don’t have a dog yet, but really want to get one. I’m wanting to know if I put a doggy door in my back garage door leading into the back yard, and keep the garage well ventilated, if I can leave the dog there to wander freely between garage and fenced backyard while I’m at work or sleeping during my 3 days per week?

    That sounds great, but be aware that dogs have been stolen from the back yard many times, so if your dog is small you need to search for an alternative. If you are in the US, is the region you are in very hot or cold? Consider this when getting a dog.

  • I have a 4 month old Pomeranian- Siberian husky. We just got her and there are major issues of her going potty in her crate and then rolling around in it. I was told by the trainer to leave her in crate at night. Each morning I find her covered with feces inside that small crate. We have a fenced in lawn but I’ve fenced off a smaller area and place a dog house in it. We live in DC. Would it be ok to only leave her out for the night until she is completely house trained? Only for the night.

    I think it is a bad idea to keep a four month old dog in a crate all night. Dogs are social animals and are not shunned to a cave to sleep alone.

    A Pomsky will be fine outside all night but she is never going to be housetrained if you revert to this now. She is probably going to be outside, feel alone, and start barking and howling. Are you ready to listen to your neighbors complaining about your dog barking all night?

    If this were my dog the first thing I would do is housetrain her properly. You will have to wake up and let her out in the middle of the night for about a week.

    https://pethelpful.com/dogs/housetrain-puppy-5-day...

    After she is housetrained, if you want to leave her out when during the day there should be no problem. (You might need to worry about someone stealing her, of course. I do not know what kind of area you live in.)

  • We have a six-month-old Shepherd/Terrier mix who loves her crate; she sleeps in it no problem from day one. We live in San Diego and during the day for the five hours we are gone and are trying to decide if leaving her in the crate or outside in a covered 5x5 kennel would be better? She is a rescue and wasn't adopted until she was six months.

    I would much rather be outside than locked up in a tiny room in which I could not even turn around. Your dog may be okay with being locked up for a while but it is not a good thing for her.

    As long as she has water and shade, being outside for those hours is a much better choice.

  • I have 3 month old shepherd/retrievers. We would like for them to be outside all the time. So far they have been fine. We have a 50x50 chain link fence in a shaded wooded area. I have gotten concern from others about leaving them outside at night due to possible coyotes or bears. We live in a mountain/rural area. Are they safe?

    I cannot promise you that your dogs will be safe from wildlife. I live in the Atlantic Rain Forest and have a jaguar that comes into my back yard. My dogs go crazy when they hear him, and if they were loose they would end up attacking him and be killed.

    The best thing you can do for your outside dogs is get them used to coming in to the house at night. Your dogs are going to be big. Wouldnt you rather have them defending you than the dog pen?

  • Could I leave a Siberian husky outside all day in Arizona? Yesterday, the temperature was 113.

    Leaving your dog outside in those conditions is a bad idea.

    It is not a good idea to have a sled dog in a hot area. I do know of people that have Siberians here in the tropics, but they are inside all day, in air conditioning.

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    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      4 weeks ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Zack--as long as they have shade and water it is not considered animal abuse in most areas. You can contact your local animal control if you want to ask for the specifics in your area.

    • profile image

      Terri 

      3 months ago

      I have 2 dogs that was threw out as puppies. They are 4 and 5 yrs old.They have fenced in yard and two crates on in closed carport when its cold or storming. They come in sometimes but not for long, they like outside. I think its common sense like everything else how to treat animals. I do not believe in chains or rope tho.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      3 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      It sounds like your Maltese has found the best of all worlds. They sound like a great pair.

    • profile image

      Loatile Tsoai 

      3 months ago

      We have a staffy bull pit (M) and a Maltese (F). They started as house puppies. The Pit got too big for the house. Maltese got too dirty outside while playing in the backyard so we said no more outside just walks. She barked so much inside at night and signals that she wants to go outside and looks sad so she moved outside. The pit looked sad alone outside at night too. We built large shelter kennel area but the gate is always open for them to roam the yard. They have hard plastic kennels, water, blankets and food. Maltese bullies the pit, growls at him on most days, eats from his bowls and sleeps in his kennel on top of him and can’t share space, she tore her bed, the dogs move the blankets all around the yard on some days. The Maltese still has her Maltese temperament but also now hunts birds but has at least stopped eating everything outside. Is this best option for both dogs? I live in South Africa. During the cold winter nights or storm we let them in the house because of the cold and they are scared of thunder.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      3 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Alli, I can only say sometimes. Dogs are individuals, so sometimes it helps a lot (since they are social) but other times the dog only wants to be social with humans, not other canines.

    • profile image

      Alli 

      3 months ago

      Do you think having another dog would help him stay outside more?

    • profile image

      Maria 

      3 months ago

      I have a 9 year old lab mix who’s an outside dog with a big air conditioning room with a doggie door, she’s been an outside dog since day one. I do have an 8 year old inside dog who doesn’t want to be out side for long periods of time. My mother lives with me she spends a lot of time with both dogs, but she will so be going to a group home and my inside dog will have to go outside since I will not be home to let him out during the day, I feel awful!!!

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      3 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Alli, bloodhounds do fine as outside dogs. If it is very cold you need to worry about their ear tips freezing, so you definitely need to provide goos shelter. Oklahoma is hot but it should be fine for a bloodhound in the summer. (They will even do okay with the high humidity in LA and Missiissippi, so OK should be fine.)

      If he is already 4, however, and is an inside dog, he is probably pretty social. Leaving him outside might not be easy.

    • profile image

      Alli 

      3 months ago

      Hello, I have a very large 4 year old bloodhound and was wondering if he’d do okay outside? We live in Oklahoma where it can get pretty cold in the winter some days and very hot in the summer. I’ve read several people who say bloodhounds don’t make good outside dogs because they’re such a social dog. Do you know much about bloodhounds?

    • profile image

      Shunrah 

      4 months ago

      Thanks Dr Mark - they're actually pretty common here amongst bedouin shepherds- I just feel so awful leaving her whilst we're all inside with the air con - including the other dogs/cats - paddling pool is a good idea though! Thank you- enjoy!

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      4 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Shunrah--great dog breed, I hope he does okay there. I think wading pool is best since the dog can stay cool (but he will make a big mess). Here are some other ideas: https://pethelpful.com/dogs/keep-your-dog-cool-in-...

    • profile image

      Shunrah 

      4 months ago

      hello - 2 months ago we rescued an italian meramma (livestock working breed) from the roadside in the north of Israel where i currently live - she's beautiful...very affectionate and we believe she was used as a working dog in one of the local villages - perhaps even just to breed more livestock puppies - she isn't keen on entering our house - we have 2 other dogs - pekingnese and a canaanite - both spoilt rotten and living alongside us in the house and she gets on with them very well but will not follow them into the house after walks etc..content to be outside..I know this isn't unusual for this particular breed - maybe she considers it her job to guard us all including the inside dogs - my concern is that now the weather is getting much hotter...we are almost in summer when outside temperatures are excruciatingly hot - i have tried in vain to get her to enter with us in the a/c - she refuses to come inside - i have tried offering treats even physically moving her in but she is visibly uncomfortable - what should i do?

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      5 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Mark, Beagles are great in outside kennels as long as they have social time. A Pomeagle will have an easier time of it, but be sure the dog has plenty of time with you and the family.

    • profile image

      Mark 

      5 months ago

      I live in Alabama. Is it ok for my pomeagle to live outside?

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      5 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Lafonmel, I appreciate your reply. Just my opinion, but I think she would be a lot better off outside than stuck in a garage all night.

    • profile image

      Lafonmel 

      5 months ago

      Thank you for your response! Her sleeping outside worries me too. I hate leaving her outside at night and she doesn't like it either. She knows when I am about to leave her and won't come outside. She just wants to be by your side all the time. That is why I hate doing that to her. The most I could do is ask my parents if I could leave her in the garage at night with a fan on. But I am not so happy about that because where I live it gets hot. 85F-98F year round. I cannot get her another dog to keep her company during the day. I feel as if I don't get much time with her, only a three or four hours before she is back outside again. What you say about pit bulls put down at shelters I have thought about. I would never ever take her to a shelter, I cannot do that and live with myself. There is this local rescue organization, a non-profit that told me they could help me if I have patience and could keep taking care of her while they find her a home. They fly the animals to other states that don't have so many animals in need of homes, not many surrenders and high adoption rates. I see they have placed pit bulls in loving homes where they are inside and have other dog siblings. They are sleeping in the furniture. I cannot help but think what if that is possible for her. I don't want to close her any doors. On the other hand, I also feel as though I am being part of the problem, being part of the people who surrender their dogs. I don't want to be that, I would like to be part of the solution. I feel as though I am taking the chance of another dog who needs it more getting adopted. But if its really really really in her best interest, I guess I would do it. For her own well being. I am really torn here. Please, don't think I am taking this easily. I am torn and feel lost. I would be heartbroken to see her go but if she is better than with me, then I would be happy for her. Thank you for listening and providing me your advice. And I looked for the name of the mass that was removed and it was a collagen nevi, just so you know exactly what it was.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      5 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Lilly, if you like the looks, a Standard Schnauzer is a medium sized dog tough enough to wrestle with your GSD and adaptable enough to handle your NE weather.

      The Kerry Blue terrier is another good choice, as is the Chow chow. Here is a link that might help. https://pethelpful.com/dogs/medium-dog-for-protect...

      In my opinion those medium sized dogs are a lot better outside than the small breeds.

    • profile image

      Lilly 

      5 months ago

      I live in the Northeastern part of the US. So yes, we experience ALL the seasons, anywhere from negative degree wind chills to highs in the 90's.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      5 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Melanie, although the situation might not be ideal, consider the alternative. Most Pits are put down when given up to a shelter, so if she has already had a medical problem (the skin mass) the prospect of finding her an alterate home is very low.

      I worry more about her social life, since she has to be alone at night. (It matters a lot more than the sun exposure. Do not worry about that.)

      It sounds like you are doing everything you can for her. Keep struggling, she is worth it!!!

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      5 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Lilly, what part of the world are you in? There are a lot of spitz-type dogs that do very well in cold, and even more that can handle the heat.

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      Melanie 

      5 months ago

      Hi. I have been taking care of a Pit Bull that I found as a stray. Her story is long but overtime she went from being an insecure, anxious, not trustful of humans to a very happy, socialized and confident dog. I want to know if I am qualified to adopt her or I should look for a home for her. I work 8-5 weekdays and I have to leave her on my backyard (fenced, shaded, water, dog house, grass area). When I come home, I play with her, walk her and just hang out with her. But all of this outside of the house, this is, in the garage and backyard because my parents do not like her inside the house. After this, I feed her at around 7-8 and then she sleeps all night in the backyard. I do not like leaving her alone during the day but I cannot bring another dog to be of company to her. Plus, she has had skin problems (a benign mass removed) and it worries me that she is outside and this can affect her health at long term. Even though there are shaded areas, there are places where the sun hits, specially after 3pm. Where I live it is an average temperature of 85F year round. So, she is already used to me that is why this is a difficult decision for me. Do you think its fair leaving her outside?

    • profile image

      Lilly 

      5 months ago

      Yes, that is what I was thinking. She spends a lot of time just looking out the windows in the house, so I feel she will be thrilled to be out. She will have a large fenced in space with access to our garage and basement when the weather isn't too good. Are there any small/medium dog breeds can do well being outside?

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      5 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Lilly, it does sound like she will be a lot happeir outside. What about a medium sized dog? You do not have to get another GSD if you do not have enough space.

    • profile image

      Lilly 

      5 months ago

      I understand what you are saying. We are moving her outside because we now have the yard space, yet our house is small and I can tell it is not the optimal space for her. She paces the house and will bark at the door, but until now we didn't have a fence for her to be let out to run. I would be ok with getting her a companion if that is best.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      5 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Lilly, you have decided to take care of a social animal. She is alone all day, sees you for a few hours, and then has the door shut in the face by the one family she has.

      Is it okay to live outside? Sure. Is it okay to ask a social animal to be alone all day, and then alone all night? It is not natural. If she is outside during the evening when you are in the house you are probably going to spend even LESS time with her.

      Occassional play dates with a neighbor dog will not make up for it.

    • profile image

      Lilly 

      5 months ago

      Our German Shepherd has been kept indoors all the time. She is about 2.5 now, and we are getting ready to transition her to be an outside dog. Right now she spends her days alone while we are at work, and nights alone (we don't let her in the bedroom). She does fine being alone now with a house full of toys. Once she moves outside, we will spend time with her when we get home and a friend down the road has a dog we can bring over for play dates. Do you think its necessary to get a second dog? I honestly don't want to if we don't have to.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      5 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      AJ--a Scotty should have no problem handling the fine weather of Kentucky. Make sure he has toys (like a Kong) so that he will be busy when alone and not sleeping. You should make sure that he has water and a dry place he can go into for shade during the day, and I would definitely recommend you keep bringing him in at night since he is so social. He sounds like a great little dog.

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      A.J. 

      5 months ago

      My wife and I work during the day, and our 11 month old Scottie is home alone for approximately 9 hours. When we are home he takes every step we take, and stays inside with us every evening and during the night. Would it be okay to leave him outside in a 6’ x 8’ kennel while we are at work? We live in Kentucky.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      6 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Whoreallycares: if this bothers you try to report your neighbors instead of sitting on the internet and complaining to people who are writing about an entirely different situation. If you think it is acceptable to sit in your warm house and complain, instead of doing something, you are the one without hope.

    • profile image

      Whoreallycares 

      6 months ago

      New neighbors just put a 6 month old German Shepard in a kennel with plastic tarp on 2 sides, a wet mat bed, in the far back corner of their yard....this is upstate NY...currently it’s 42, windy and rainy, nights are in the 30’s, ..I get to see this poor lonely soul bark and cry 24/7......if you people think this is acceptable then there is absolutely no hope for any other beings except yourselves

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      6 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Mimi, the main reason I think dogs should come in is not because of the weather, it is because dogs are social animals and need companionship. If you do not let your dog in, and he is bored and lonely, he will likely develop behavioral problems (digging, running off, etc).

      Siberians and Samoyeds both shed, a lot. Consider a Standard Poodle. You can keep his coat shorter, he is a lot easier to bathe, he does not shed all of the time, and if your husband is okay with him may be able to let him in at night.

      If you are not able to let him in, you really need to consider another dog so that he will not be alone at night.

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      Mimi 

      6 months ago

      We live in Northern California and have a descent size backyard. We’ve always wanted to have a dog but since my husband is allergic to dogs, we could only consider keeping the dog outside all the time. I’m at home during the day so I could walk the dog every morning, Pilar with him/her, or even set up an office outside to be with my dog while I’m working. My concern is about the night. Could we leave the dog outside to sleep during the night too? (In his/her dog house of course.) Or would we still need to bring the dog inside? We don’t have any other animals to be the dog’s company—probably just me during the day and my children after school. Also we are considering a Samoyed or Siberian husky. Would that be doable? Thanks!!!

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      7 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Although your new Bernese would probably prefer a canine companion, dogs are amazingly adaptable animals. He will most likely adopt one of the cats and be just fine.

    • profile image

      Meg 

      7 months ago

      We are considering getting a Great Bernese puppy for our farm in Indiana, USA. Are horses, cats and chickens enough companions for an outdoor farm dog like this?

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      7 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Sam, since dogs are such social animals it sounds like your mastiff rotti mix is just lonely for another dog. If this were my pet I would definitely get her another to spend time with, let them be outside during the day, and the in at night since it is so cold where you live.

      Best of luck.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      7 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Sam, since dogs are such social animals it sounds like your mastiff rotti mix is just lonely for another dog. If this were my pet I would definitely get her another to spend time with, let them be outside during the day, and the in at night since it is so cold where you live.

      Best of luck.

    • profile image

      Sam 

      7 months ago

      I have a 9 month old Mastiff Rotti Mix we got her from a farm where she lived 100% outside with other dogs. Now she’s on her own and she only wants to be outside. We’ve only had her for four months and the first 4( just moved days ago) she was in an apartment. Not good. Now we are in the country with a yard and I want to know how to set her up out there. She loves the snow. She hates coming inside. She pouts all the time and doesn’t seem happy. That’s how I found your site. Help! I live in northern Canada. Should we get a second dog for her and then keep them outside most of the time and let them in at night?

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      Fraser 

      7 months ago

      I just want to commend you on your writing style. You are so complete and direct with what you have written. Fantastic.

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      Tracy 

      8 months ago

      Finally an article with some commonsense . I get so fed up with people that feel like the only way a dog can be loved and taken care of is...It Must Be In The House, or its animal abuse.. For some breeds being locked up in the house is prison.

      Dogs need food, water, appropriate shelter, exercise and attention.

      Before getting a dog, take in to consideration where you live, if your in the city with a small yard, then dont go buy a hunting dog that needs to run and exercise. Or if you live in the country leaving a small lap dog outside in the middle of the night, may not be that wise.

      As a boy I was raised up on a ranch with Blue Healer cow dogs, that were 100% outside, they were very tough and hardy dogs, and had to be for the work they had to do. But they loved it. One night It was about 10 degrees out so I snuck peppy into my bedroom, and all he wanted to do was get back outside. They loved riding in back of the pickup around the ranch rain snow or shine. We had to drag them out of the back of the pickup when going to town, for their saftey when going down the highway, but they would go if you let em nomatter if 0 or 100 degrees.

      It seems so much of society has become so pussyfied now days its ridiculous. What may be appropriate for one type of dog may not be for another.

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      Emilie 

      8 months ago

      I live northern canada on the coast of hudson bay. All dogs here live outside. Even puppies. They thrive outside. I couldnt tell you the breed of my dog but he is part wolf..like most dogs here. He has a wooden house with spruce and caribou fur at the bottom. He eats only wild game meat and hunts mice, rabbits, fish and birds as well. Runs 20k and doesnt get tired. Sometimes i bring him in the house when its pretty cold. Below -50deg celcius. But other dogs stay out and theyre fine. All pups are born outside and their den remains outside. Often there are people that come up from large cities in the south and they cant believe our dogs stay outside. Some feel like they need to be saved. These dogs are used to it.

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      Julie Lovell 

      8 months ago

      Thank u so much because my Bernice ( baby bear) is wanting to go outside all the time in this fridgeit weather it’s only 8 this morning I’m just worried about him freezing his paw pads so u say it’s ok if that’s what they want I appreciate ur help thanks

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      8 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Hi Julie remember Bernese are from the mountains, so the cold is okay as long as he has a place to get out of the wind, adequate access to water and is fed regularly.

      The Bernese I have been around love the snow too.

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      Juliealovell 60@ yahoo.com 

      8 months ago

      I was just wondering if it’s safe for my 2 year old Bernice mountain dog be outside if it’s only 25 degrees and 4 inches of snow I love my Bernice dog and I don’t want anything to happen to him he’s my world his name is baby bear

      Thank u

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      10 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Carla, a Husky/Shepherd mix is going to shed a lot, but as long as you are prepared for that and are willing to leave the dog outside that should be okay.

      You mention 22 acres to run, but a husky will run a lot more than that. If you are in a rural area with livestock the dog might need to be confined. As far as housing, the house should be tall enough for the dog to stand up, as long as his body, and wide enough for him to sleep comfortably. You will probably need to build an outside kennel so that the dog does not run off during the day.

      Dogs are social animals. If your family is not going to spend a lot of time playing with the dog because of health reasons, another dog is best. (Look into Standard Poodles. There is no such thing as a hypoallergenic dog but Standard Poodles are one of the best options for someone will allergies, and the dog will be large enough to hang out with the husky mix.

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      Carla 

      10 months ago

      We live in Ohio and our kids would love a dog however 3 out of 4 of us are allergic and cannot have indoor pets. Our cousin approached us to ask if we could take his 1 year old Husky/German Shepherd mix dog. It’s an outside dog and we have 22 acres here he could run on. My question is how large of a shelter does an outside dog usually need and can we build one that would have plenty of room? Would it be better to have it alone until we’ve got the dog acclimated or find another dog to be with it for company and companionship?

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      10 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Your Catahoula sounds great.The weather is mild where I live, year round, but when I open my door at 5:30 each morning to move my horses and let the sheep out my Pitbulls are outside dogs until evening. (They all sleep in our house because of the mosquitoes.)

    • Shesabutterfly profile image

      Cholee Clay 

      10 months ago from Wisconsin

      Loved this! Growing up our dogs where never allowed in the house. People thought we were so mean to them (they all lived to be in their late teens and past the 12-14 year life expectency for their breed). If they were bred for the weather/work why keep them indoors where they are likely uncomfortable and bored?

      Currently I own a Catahoula mix who is an indoor dog, but vastly prefers to be outside. She would spend hours out there if we let her. She's a short hair and about 45lbs and I sometimes worry she'll get too cold during the harsh WI winters, but that doesn't seem to be the case. She loves just sitting out there watching the birds/squirrels and neighborhood dogs, tracking rabbit scents, or simply rolling around in the grass/snow.

      She's smart and well trained, so we let her out if we are working in the kitchen, but with an unfenced yard I don't trust her to be out there alone if I cannot keep an eye on her. We boundary trained her when she was just a pup and have had no issues in seven years with her running off, but you never know.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      11 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Hi Savanah when I lived in the US my Sibes never wanted to go in. They preferred to be outside unless it was raining, in which case they would retreat to their shelters. Should your dog be acclimated to his shelter? Not in my opinion. I think you should let him do what he wants.

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      Savanah 

      11 months ago

      We have a 6 month old Siberian Husky and red fox Labrador retriever cross that stays outside mon-thursday from 5:30am-4pm, he hates his dog house and would rather sit in the rain or snow. He comes inside and sleeps in our bed with us and is often socialized with my parents golden retriever and my husbands parents two blue heelers. I often wonder if people think I am doing the wrong thing by leaving our boy outside. He is well loved and very well taken care of, he just prefers to be outside in the North Dakota elements. Do you have any advice on possibly acclimating him to his dog house? Or should I just let him do as he pleases??

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      11 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Cori, sure it is okay to bring her in for a while each day. Dogs are very social animals and she is going to get really bored outside anyway. If you do not have sheep or goats in your yard to keep her company she is going to try and escape if she is not let in to socialize.

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      Cori 

      11 months ago

      We have a 10 month old great pyreneese/antolian Shepherd. We are trying to leave her outside and we live in Minnesota. My question is, is it ok to bring her in for a couple hours a day? She sleeps in a open crate in the garage and has a 1 acre fenced yard. Will bringing her in for a length of time affect her winter coat?

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      Chris 

      12 months ago

      I have owned outside dogs for nearly 40 years. None of my dogs barked excessively, they all live far beyond their breeds life expectancy, and they seemed well balanced and happy. I always gave them a lot of room to live and play in (big yards), they had good shelter, and plenty of water. I know people who have indoor dogs who crate them during the work day. If my dogs could vote, I am sure they would take their space and freedom.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      13 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Amr, I would worry more about the cold but I am not sure what part of the country you are in. Make sure your Boerboel has adequate cover from the rain. As I mentioned in the comment below, make sure that you spend plenty of time socializing with your dog.

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      Amr 

      13 months ago

      i am getting an 8 week boerboel, I am in England. I have built an brick shed with an open window and door and also within the shed will be a kennel with blanket bed water chew toys and he will have access to the garden as the shed door will be open. is this ok? anything else I need to do?

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      13 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      James, it sounds fine for a Newfie in the winter. As always, my main concern is about the dogs social life. Just because your dog is outside does not mean that he can be ignored. Try to spend as much time with him as possible when he is a puppy.

      Not sure how a Newfie will do with your heat spells. If you have AC in your house he might need to come in. If not you might want to set up a cooling fan system in your garage for those hot times. Make sure he has plenty of shade and water when it is hot.

      Best of luck to you both. It is too hot where I live (year-round) to have a Newfie but I would if I could; they are a great breed of dog.

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      James 

      13 months ago

      I am considering getting a Newfoundland pup for my family, but would like your advice before deciding to purchase. I plan to have the dog stay inside as a small puppy, then move outdoors. I live in an American state that can have winter temps as low as -10 F and summer temps as high as 100 F. I have a well lit 15x25 ft garage and would be building an attached outdoor enclosure that's about 7x25 ft. Would these provide sufficient living quarters for a Newfoundland? If not, what modifications would you suggest? Thanks.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      14 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      The main danger for Labs in Florida is heat becuase of their heavy undercoat. As long as the dog has adequate social interaction, he should be fine.

      Here is an article on heat stress so that you will know how to avoid it and what to watch for: https://pethelpful.com/dogs/keep-your-dog-cool-in-...

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      Original 

      14 months ago

      Hell, I’m thinking of getting a lab but don’t really want to keep inside... I understand the thin coat, we live in Florida so hat would you say about keeping him outside? He would be tended to daily as far as walks, play time, training and socialization but with all the people in the house it would be too much to consider. Any thoughts?

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      14 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Nikki, Pyrenees are adapted to moutain conditions and have a thick coat. I would not try to keep one here, and I am not sure how he wlll survive there in Alabama because of the heat and humidity. You can try to call some local vets and ask how long haired heavy dogs do there during the summer if provided with water and shade.

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      Nikki 

      14 months ago

      I have a Pyrenees and he is eating up my house. I live in Alabama. Can I leave him outside during the day with a pool and my shaded trees? We have two inside dogs. When we got Home our other dogs would go out and play all night until bedtime

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      15 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Tank & Legend,

      as I mentioned to Tammy, what is okay for your dogs is not necessarally okay with your community.

      The pups sound like they are okay. Be sure to spend plenty of time with them, start them in obedience classes, and make sure they get adequate veterinary care. They need to be socialized too, as back yard dogs that do not go for walks have a lot of psych problems.

      The only thing I would worry about if I was in your position is wild animals. My dogs sleep inside since I live in the Atlantic Rain Forest and there is a danger of wild animals, almost always at night. As long as that is not an issue, and your puppys have shelter and water, there is no problem.

      Best of luck with your new puppies.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      15 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Tammy, a dog like a Dobie should be fine in Hawaii as long as he has shade and water.

      Your community is another matter.

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      Tank & Legend 

      15 months ago

      I was scared of leaving my two month old puppies outside, more so that they could get used to sleeping outside. This is my first time owning dogs of my own, as well as my younger siblings. But I truly want to know if it's okay for Shepherd/Pit puppies to be sleeping outside? I have shelter, toys, food and water for them to last the night, as well as sibling/brotherly support and love. I get nervous because I've been told it's bad because puppies shouldn't be outside, but also that it's okay because it helps them get used to their environment as part of their learning and growing process. It's currently a nice summer out here in California, and cool and breezy nights, but I just get paranoid with leaving them outside. In the end, having them inside the house can get hectic with them letting loose everywhere, along with visitors every so often. Sometimes I want to cry because I lose my mind over what is okay and what isn't. I am also planning on building or buying a bigger shelter since they will be big dogs, but I just want to make sure that it's okay for them to be outside at this time. Please advise.

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      Tammy 

      15 months ago

      I live in Hawaii and we have a Doberman. My community thinks I am a horrible person for keeping our dog outside. He is well provided with Shelter. I don’t see what the problem is..

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      Dan 

      15 months ago

      I have 2 dogs, a Beagle and a Lab/Pit mutt. They have a large roofed shelter from the rain/wind that's attached to the porch. It's full of hay in the winter, and in the summer they sometimes use it for shade. They are outside 100% of the time, have 5 acres to play on, and have permanent food and fresh water. I keep an outdoor thermometer in the shelter. In the NC winter the outdoor temps will occasionally get below freezing. The temp in their shelter has never gone below 60. The summers get into the high 90s, but there is permanent shade on the patio on the north side of my house, and the water dish has a float value to constantly keep cool water flowing when they want it. My dogs could not be happier. Not everyone has a good setup for outdoor dogs but it's absolutely possible to raise perfectly happy, healthy dogs, outdoors.

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      Kimberly R. 

      15 months ago

      Thank you for this common sense article.

      My husband and I adopted a rat terrier two years ago who had been surrendered twice in her very young life to the humane shelter for what I quickly realized would be considered terribly bad behavior by anyone misguided enough to keep her inside. Unfortunately for her, she was also labeled as a dog who had "bitten a child."

      Here, she digs, chews, runs and plays outside in her fenced backyard. She has several kiddie pools of clean water placed in various parts of the yard so that one is always in the shade. I cannot fathom how frustrating it would be for all involved, especially her, and let's not forget about her, to place "indoor constraints" on this beautiful, loving, spirited animal. We don't have a companion pet for her because we spend time with her. None of the children who come through our home have had any trouble with her.

      She has a crate on our covered patio in the summer and an igloo in the winter and uses them as needed. She comes in occasionally but always wants to go back outside. She is much loved, but we're not parachute parents. We try to be sensitive to her concerns, but she doesn't rule the household. For example, last night we crated her in the house because of the July 4th fireworks which frighten her, but, no, she did not sleep in our bed or on our furniture. Did I mention that she hunts and kills moles and the occasional squirrel in **her** back yard?

      I say all this because it seems that people have lost their senses where pets are concerned. When we adopted our rat terrier from the shelter, every single dog in the shelter--tiny, small, medium, large, and huge--was labeled an indoor dog. When I questioned this assessment, I was told that this was the prevailing opinion for those who work in the shelter. I feel this practice places too many dogs in the wrong homes or, worse, NOT in homes that would otherwise be considered a very good fit.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      16 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      I, dogs are not like horses. They do not need to graze. You can put the food down, and wait with your dog for 15 minutes while she eats her meal. When she has finished eating, take away the rest and do not give her food again until her next meal. If she does not eat anyway, take away her food until her next meal.

      She will probably eat her food quicker then. If not, repeat.

      Leave water down all the time.

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      16 months ago

      My dog is outside always,i give food early in the morning and the afternoon the problem is that the bird's eat his food,what can I do.

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      Darcy 

      16 months ago

      Yes I have 2 dogs who live outside I am renting and the owner was very specific about not letting dogs in the house they are well looked after on a raw diet always checking there water get walked at least once everyday (twice if i don't have to go to work) unless it is pouring rain they have there own shed with blankets and heat mats in winter cooling mats in summer sometimes i go without food so my dogs can eat so yes it is possible to have dogs living outside and still be well cared for thanks for this article

    • profile image

      MaggieandMolliesMom 

      17 months ago

      Thank God for a voice of reason! About a month ago I got two little girls puppies. Lab/st Bernard mix. The plan is to let them live outside. We have provided a fenced in yard, BIG dog house to snuggle in together and an area with shelter from sun/rain. They have a continuous waterer and are fed on a schedule. If they were inside they would have to be crated (separately) for at least 9-10 hours each day and then have a few hours loose before I have to go to bed. Instead they are free in their yard to play with each other and toys, snooze in the shade and poop and pee in the grass, haha. When I come home we romp in the yard (we have a 25 acre yard, lol) for a couple hours, take a break while I fix and eat supper and then we play again and learn some commands for another hour or two before dark. They are happy, extremely attached to me and their other humans, love when family and friends animals come to visit and are all around adorable pups. They are also obedient, learning tasks such as “come, sit, stay” rather easily so far (of course they’re all about the treat rewards!) Next is “down” and leash training so we can explore down the road! Thank you again for your very reasonable approach to animals and how they live.

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      18 months ago

      I have two make aussie shepherds that stay outdoors pretty much year round in Texas. With their thick coats, they LOVE the cooler and cold weather, and in the summers they get a haircut to keep them from overheating. They have absolutley no deaire to come inside, even when the doors are wide open.

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      Andy 

      18 months ago

      I have 4 small dogs that all sleep outside. Been alive for years. There dogs stop treating them like children

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      George 

      18 months ago

      I have a Siberian Husky and a German Shephard.. my husky will come inside from time to time when he feels like it but if I close the yard door he we’ll start barking at me.. at first I had no idea what he wanted I tried food, water, playing and it turned out all he wanted to do was go out into the yard to watch the night sky and enjoy the fresh air.. so he is outside about 80% of the time and will come in for the occasional sleep on the tiles or in our bed.. the shepherd on the other hand prefers my partner and I’s company and would rather sleep in our bed with us at night.. so at the end of the day i say it’s the dogs choice.. I used to feel sorry for the husky outside on his own at night but I would go out and see how he was going if he was sad and quiet contrary he would be laying with all fours in the air and had a big dopey smile on his face lol.. so like I said (I’m not dog expert at all) but my opinion is that if you get to know what your dog wants and understand them then let them choose :) .. this was a really good and level headed read by the way.. really enjoyed it!! Thanks!

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      18 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Star, a JRT/chihuahua mix is one of the dogs I would not want outside in very cold weather. There is not much you can do since it is not your house but please do make sure your dog has water.

    • profile image

      Star 

      18 months ago

      My dad put my dad out side in a big cage he has shelter and he is a jack russle mix chiuawawa he likes it out side he has medium fur I feed him. And give him water is that all I need to do?

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      19 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Cheryl, my Siberians were just like your Sheprador. They would come inside to say hello to the family but went back outside to enjoy themselves. Thanks for your great comment.

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      Cheryl 

      19 months ago

      This is the most common sense I have seen regarding leaving a dog outside. When I was growing up dogs did NOT live inside and the Pet I had was fine. He knew he was loved and could depend on his family to care for him. Times have changed in ways that's it seems to be more of fashion statement to have a dog inside than letting them out to be dogs! I am older now and just got a beautiful sheprador(rescue) and have stressed over leaving her outside due to all the new age ideas that it's cruel. I agree in that if I were a dog and had a choice of crate vs the great outdoors it woul d be a no brainer! I love my pup and she's going to be an awesome dog. But she will be an awesome outside dog. Just for those who may be critical of my choice believe it or not i gave her a Choice. She comes Inside to visit with my husband but right back out she wants to GO. shes Happy Healthy and gets plenty of attention. thank You for Helping me get past feeling bad about leaving her outdoors. Sheba thanks you too!

    • profile image

      Isa 

      19 months ago

      My Bernese lives outside of the house and a lot of Bernese ownership judge me because of that. I’m not leaving him alone, all by himself. I give him lots of love, attention, we play a lot with his toys... but it’s like a obligation to keep a breed like a Bernese inside the house all the time. I used to feel guilty about it, but now that I saw this post I’m started to feel better about it

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      20 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Hi Shaz a GSD should have no problems in mild weather like Dallas. I would actually be more concerned about the summer since that breed has a long fur coat. Do some reading on the best way to keep your dog cool in the summer. Best of luck to you both.

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      Shaz Akhtar 

      20 months ago

      Hello,

      I recently just got a three month old German Shepard from my neighbor who was moving out of country, anyway she has always been an outdoor dog and seems to enjoy her time outside. Do you think that it is fine for a German Shepherd to be outdoor she has plenty of shelter, toys, and a dog water fountain. I live in Dallas so on occasion the weather ranges from like 25-100 f through the year

      Thanks

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      20 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Skubi´s Dad: I lost a junkyard dog I rescued several years ago to cancer secondary to asbestos exposure, so I know how hard this can be. My dog lost weight for several weeks and finally stopped eating. It was terrible.

      In Skubi´s case, the cancer certainly had nothing to do with him being outside, and nothing in the way you took care of him. It sounds like you did all you could.

      I cannot tell you when it would be a good idea to get another dog, but I definitely do not agree with the idea of not getting another dog. Our pets die. My number one soul mate, a Pitbull that is the best dog ever, is a senior so I know that in the years to come she is going to pass. She was spayed so although I wanted one of her puppies I ended up bringing home one of her neices. Not the same at all, but at least she is probably going to be around a lot longer. If you decide to get another dog later, he will not be Skubi, but he will be an individual deserving all of your care.

      Sorry about your loss, truly.

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      Skubi 

      20 months ago

      Scooby will sadly be put down tommorow...He was diagnosed with cancer in metastatis(sorry if I said it wrong,I don't know much about cancers).We discovered the cancer too late,it spread all through his body...I can only imagine the pain he is suffering.I alone decided to put him down because I see how his stomach makes weird moves and we give him water with force.He didn't eat for 2 days.He is probably in pain...I'll be with him this last day,I'll take pictures of him so I have something to remember him of.This life just isn't fair.He did not deserve this,he was only 5 and he was living kind of left out from my family.I fell in depression,I just can't accept the fact that when I open the balcony doors,nobody will be there jumping around and wagging his tail.My father and I tried everything to save him,it seems like we didn't try enough...I will never have a pet again knowing that I'll have to go through the same thing one day.Maybe I am so depressed because it's my first time experiencing death of a loved one,but I just don't want to do anything fun,I just feel like that would be a disrespect to his death.Animals deserve a better life than 90% of humans.Even if we discovered it earlier,I wouldn't give him chemoterapy or radiotherapy.I'd never want a dog to have an "expiry date".Life really sucks!!

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      20 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Based on your description Skubi has a small intestinal disease, maybe inflammatory bowel dieases. It can be treated, controlled, but not cured, so all of the meds that have been tried are just an attempt to see if something might work. The one thing I can suggest that might work is probiotics. I am not sure what is available where you live.

    • profile image

      Skubi 

      20 months ago

      Skubi is actually the name of my dog.It's Scooby just on Serbian.

      The first vet came on 10th January and for 3 days he gave him 3 vaccines which he didn't tell us the name of,but I feel like it did nothing,he just walked harder with that leg for next few days.We waited a bit and nothing happened,he was just having a really awful diarrhea for the next few days.I thought that grass will help and they same day he ate some grass he vomited it along with his food.By the way he was vomiting for the first 10-12 days.Then he stopped vomiting,he just had a bad diarrhea.Slowly he began to lose his weight.I could see his ribs more and more every day.By the 21th January he was literally half of his full size.He was so skinny he would get tired after 800m of walking.The vet that gave him those vaccines was just a small private vet,so me and my parents took him to a nearest if I could say more developed vet. station.I'm not sure if the names of the medicine stuff are the same here in Serbia and there,but he told us to give him Longaceph vaccine first day,and if he felt better,give him one every next day for 7 days.We didn't notice much difference but he did want to chew on toys and he wagged his tail which he kept down or between his legs.So yeah we gave him all 7 vaccines.The situation is the same.Skinny,bad diarrhea.I noticed that 2 pairs of glands got bigger.The ones under his jaw and the one on the down side of his neck.They weren't that oversized but it was noticeable.We wen't and analyzed his blood,we took him to the same vet that gave him longaceph and he said it wasn't that bad.He gave him albendazole,and there was no difference in his health,still skinny,weak and a bad diarrhea.After we waited 3 days,a dads friend that has a Yugoslavian Sheperd told us hiw his dog had bad diarrhea,was very skinny for a few days and he got better by giving him nifuroxazide and activated charcoal.We did the same and we noticed how he was more playful and his bad diarrhea had some little bits of normal excrement(not sure how to say it but there were some small sized brown balls),in a diffrerence from before when it was pure liquid.We also gave him Bactrim.A few days passed by and here we are.He is still having a bad diarrhea with those bits,he lost even more weight,his glands on the down side of his neck are almost the size of a small egg.My parents are talking about taking him to another vet and if he doesn't get better in the next few days,we will have to put him to sleep.He is so young and full of life...He has lived only 5 years,I'd really like him to survive this,I wouldn't be able to forgive myself for not caring about him more.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      20 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Hi Skubi it sounds like you care a lot about your Staffy and are doing the best you can for him. What kind of pills did your vet give you for his weight loss?

      A lot of dogs freak out from fireworks, so if you can keep him inside that night it is a lot better. If you look on my profile page you can find an article about teaching a dog to have no fear of fireworks through conditioning; it is a lot of work but eventually it can help a lot.

      Let me know if I can answer any questions for you.

    • profile image

      Skubi 

      20 months ago

      Is it okay if I keep my dog on a big balcony with water food and shelter always provided?The balcony on the back of the house is huge sadly it has no grass or trees,it's just a flat balcony with a separated shelter that is protected with walls.The dogs breed is American Staffordshire Terrier which is similar to pitbulls.He is out there all the time except for the winter when I have to take him to the garage which is right next doors,but on the winter I walk him 3 times a day and I feed him like 6 times with smaller portions.He really can't stay outside cause temperatures here get down to -20C and his fur is really short.I would like to keep him in house but my mother is allergic to him so he can't live in the house.While he is in garage he has enough space,a warm radiator next to his blanket and water.When the winter is gone I walk him 2 times a day with walks of 1 hour and he is fed properly,he has toys to chew on and has a view on a huge street,so he is not that bored.I would really like if he was in with my family but I'm 16 years old and I have school so I am with him barely 2,5 hours with him a day except for some days when we go on a trip to nature where I let him free and he runs for the whole day with me.I feel so sorry that I can't spend more time with him,and for last 25 days he is so sick and skinny and I am so afraid that he has a serious sickness and he is only 5 years old.Me and my dad visited a vet,he gave him some pills and we are giving him vaccines but I haven't seen any improvment,we have checked his blood and the vet says that his blood is not so bad.I'm sure that it was because of new year fireworks and firecrackers,since he was outside on the midnight.I want to punish myself so much for not putting him inside I was such an idiot...

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      21 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Julie, here is a link to an article I wrote on keeping your dog cool

      https://pethelpful.com/dogs/keep-your-dog-cool-in-...

      Labs are prone to obesity, so please take special note on the section on weight control.

    • profile image

      Julie 

      21 months ago

      We just adopted a German Shepherd/lab mix. We live in South Carolina, USA. Temperatures can get anywhere from 90- 97 degrees F in the summer. If it's not advisable to switch between indoor/outdoor living, how would one keep a dog comfortable outside while temple are this high?

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      22 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Taryn,that makes me wonder why people like that even get a dog! Purchasing a Pug was probably not cheap, and then to leave it without shelter is really disgraceful. They are not outside dogs, and they need to socialize too. Getting the dog a shelter is a great idea--maybe she would even consider giving the dog to someone that wants to give it a real home?

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      TarynDavidson 

      22 months ago

      Hi, I'm worried about my friends dog. She keeps him outside all the time, and the dog is never socialized. There's no snow, but it's extremely windy and it's about 29 degrees F during the night. No shelter, he is kept in a large backyard and he sleeps on the ground - nothing else but a pathetic thin, old towel of hers. He's a very small breed - pug. I would really like to say something, but instead I was thinking about getting him a shelter and a couple of warm blankets. Please help, it's only a few months old, and I'm afraid it's suffering miserably outside!

    • profile image

      Eememe 

      22 months ago

      Okay great thank you! He still hasn’t gone in and it is -5 celcius tonight but he looks rather comfortable all sprawled out on his bed right outside his doghouse and he has plenty of food and water. Thank you again for your help!

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      22 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Mackenzie, beagles do fine outside in most conditions but what bothers me is that you mention he does not have a shelter, and what is worse is that he is isolated. They are pack dogs, used to being with a lot of other animals, very social. Not sure what you can do, as it really depends on what state or region you are in. It does sound like cruelty, but some regions do not care much about treatment of dogs.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      22 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      eememe--I think the best thing you could do for your dog is provide the house, with some straw bedding, and if he gets cold in that fur coat he can use it. if not, he will stay outside.

      Do not forget to provide fresh water. Dogs need to drink even if it gets down to zero C.

    • profile image

      eememe 

      22 months ago

      I live in Hungary ( a small country in Europe) it got extremely cold last year -3 celcius I think with a lot of snow. I think the coldest it has gotten this year was 24 F so I think around 0 celcius, but when I look out our window he is sometimes shivering and from what I understand that is a sign a dog is cold. It has warmed up a bit so I suppose I won’t have to worry too much for a little while

    • profile image

      mackenzie mena 

      22 months ago

      Hi, my neighbor leaves his beagle outside 24/7 for years. The dog has no interaction with anyone or thing, and does not have access to shelter or sometimes food. In the summer it gets to 100 and in the winter we get into the 20s. The only thing he has is concrete and dirt. Ive called the non emergency number on them last winter and this summer and while they say the dog is on the skinner side, that he is fine. it’s getting very cold again and the poor thing cries all night. i feel terrible, is the dog okay? what should i do? We talked to the ex wife of the owner but she never does anything and we’re too afraid to confront the owner because he’s dangerous.

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      22 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      eememe, maybe your dog does not want to go inside the house . Where are you located? Maybe you think it is cold and it is fine for him. My Siberians would never sleep in a dog house, no matter how cold I thought it was, but they would go inside sometimes to get out of the rain.

      The current feeling in the US is that it is cruel to leave dogs outside. I think that is pretty stupid and does not consider the dog.

    • profile image

      Eememe 

      22 months ago

      I know it has been awhile since this article was written but can I just say how happy I am to see that someone finally agrees with me. Our dog, a golden cocker has lived outside all his life. Though we take him inside every so often he mostly stays outside ( due to my allergies and the fact that he always begs to go back out). My little sister and I are homeschooled so I try to spend as much time with him as possible (I would say about an hour to an hour and a half a day and every other day I take him on an hour walk to a park where he is let off the leash and can run around). But that is not the point. He hasn’t been sleeping in his doghouse and it is getting rather cold. He slept in it all last winter but refuses to now. It is nice and warm and well insulated with lots of room and nothing has changed since last winter. Thankfully this winter is milder and eventually if its gets cold and he still won’t sleep in it, my parents agreed to let him inside. I have done quite a bit of research but all the only answers I get is that I am abusing him and should feel very ashamed. Any ideas on how to get him sleeping in his doghouse? Also he has a bed and blankets right next to his house on the covered porch so he isn’t sleeping on cold ground.

    • profile image

      Dbarcus 

      22 months ago

      Hi there, we are a family of 7 and we live in Amish country of Pennsylvania. We rent our home from an Amish family and Amish do not believe in household pets only outdoor pets. Anyways, my boyfriend and I have 5 kids, our 3 year old has autism, and dogs calm him very very much, my boyfriend and I have always wanted dogs, our children as well and so we want to get a pair of husky mixes, but obviously like stated above they have to stay outside, we wanna get puppies so that they can be trained to be outside and adapt to that but we are not sure the proper steps to take in building them a house that is insulated and caged so that at night they don’t wonder off, I am a stay at home mom so they pretty much will be out of the fenced area all day, and depending on any errands I may run from time to time will be allowed to ride along with us, we want our 3 year old to have as much time with the dogs as possible, run around and love on each other and just be best friends because we have seen the impact health wise it has on our son and knowing huskies enjoy the attention and affection he has to give to them as well as the rest of the family I feel it would be a great fit, we live off of a farm, no criminal activities happen that we have ever heard about as far as theft of any sort etc. maybe just some pointers on how soon to start leaving the dogs out, references to building them an awesome house for weather of every kind, we have hot/humid summers and 25-30 is as cold as it typically gets, sometimes there is snow but rarely anything to be worried about for the dogs

    • DrMark1961 profile imageAUTHOR

      Dr Mark 

      23 months ago from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil

      Please: I would not keep my Schnauzer outside. She is not particularly adapted for the heat here, and I imagine it is just as bad over there.

      Congrats, hope you all do well together.

    • profile image

      Please answer my Question! 

      23 months ago

      Hi everyone.

      Reading these comments is shocking! The poor use of grammar is terrible!

      I am getting a miniature Schnauzer soon and I was browsing the web to see if I could keep it outside because I am not allowed to have it inside.

      I live in Australia and the weather conditions can get pretty harsh.

      Should I just keep it in the laundry?

      Could I keep a dog as small as a mini schnauzer outside?

      Please answer my question ASAP.

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