Why Do Dogs Love Snow?

If you've taken your dog out into the snow, you know how much dogs love to play around in a winter wonderland. But do you know why? Read this article to find out!
Why Do Dogs Love Snow?

Last update: 18 May, 2019

If you live close to a snowy area, and have ever taken your dog there, you’ve probably noticed how much fun it has. It will roll around, run, jump, and maybe even eat the snow. But why do dogs love snow so much, when, for us, just touching it makes us cold and want to coop up inside?

There’s one thing for certain: it awakens the exploring instinct all dogs have inside them, and they go wild with fun. Let’s take a look at why that is.

Why dogs love snow

A dog in the snow.

Years ago, we had a hard time understanding certain dog behaviors. We’ve since got a much better idea and can explain why they act in one way or another most of the time.

Snow is like a giant playground for dogs

If you want to know what your dog would do in the snow, then let it off its leash and watch it have fun. The snow is like a giant playground for them to run and jump around in.

Snow turns their environment into something completely new and different, and dogs love that. Just like with little kids, the first time a dog experiences snow is an unforgettable moment for it.

Being in the snow gives them a chance to let out their inner explorer. A snowy landscape is basically a beautiful, wide new space for them to discover.

Plus, the snow also has paw prints and urine from other animals, branches, and all kinds of other things for them to sniff. It’s really no surprise that they love that, because it sparks their curiosity.

Dogs are prepared for the cold

Despite what some people think, even if you don’t have a husky your dog can still handle the snow. It won’t feel cold to them because its fur will protect it and its paw pads can deal with the snow really well. 

Dogs have an interesting form of blood flow that keeps their paw pads extra warm. That means their paws stay warm too. Beyond that, dogs are also able to activate their metabolism in low temperatures. That rise in metabolism helps keep the cold from seeping in by keeping their body warm.

However, as comfortable and well-prepared as your dog may be for the snow, there are still some precautions you need to take when you go out into the winter wonderland with it.

Precautions for taking your dog out in the snow

A big dog standing in a snowy field.

Even though dogs can handle the cold much better than humans, there are still precautions worth taking:

  • Give it a coat. Even though its fur will protect it from the cold, the snow might get it wet and it’ll get cold much faster. To prevent that, you can give yours a little (waterproof) jacket that can make the day in the snow more pleasant for it.
  • Protect its paws. Like we said before, their paws and paw pads will stay warm. However, you should still protect them because they could get a kind of burn from the cold, and the same is true if it’s a sunny day. If you go to a pet store or your vet, you should be able to find the right paw protectors. If you don’t have time for that, Vaseline is a good option.
  • Keep track of it. Dogs eat everything they find, and that’s no less true with snow. But that could lead to stomach problems, nausea, or vomiting. It’s also easy for it to get lost, especially if there are lots of people around.
  • Be careful where you let it off leash. If you let it roam in areas where people sled or go skiing, your dog could end up being injured, or injure other people by accident.
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