With bitterly cold temperatures and snowfall possible in the UK this weekend and next week, dog owners are being warned about the impact the weather may have on their dogs.

Met Office Deputy Chief Meteorologist David Hayter explained: “While the initial snow risk from Sunday onwards is looking most likely to be coastal areas in the north of the UK, including North Sea and Irish Sea coasts, there’s an ongoing likelihood of some disruptive snow through the middle to latter part of next week.

“What we’re keeping an eye on for this disruptive snow is where exactly this milder air from the southwest bumps into the cold air that will be in place over the UK. It’s where these airmasses meet that there’s a likelihood of some substantial snow for some places.

“At the moment, models are showing us a variety of options for exactly when and how this situation plays out and it’s something we’ll be able to add more details to in the coming days.”

The Bolton News:

Independent research from Kennel Store has found that 5 of the UK’s favourite dog breeds are at high risk of hypothermia from temperatures below 7°C, with a further 7 popular breeds at medium risk, including the nation’s favourite, Labrador Retriever.

Dog breeds most at risk are:

  1. Jack Russell Terrier
  2. Boxer
  3. Border Terrier
  4. Miniature Schnauzer
  5. Hungarian Vizsla

A Kennel Store spokesman said: “Your dog’s fur and ear length can determine how risky it is for them to be in cold temperatures.

"Short ears help to prevent dogs from getting frostbite and long, thick fur coats help them stay warm in cold and snowy conditions.

"Be cautious of your dog’s health when temperatures hit 7°C or below.

“For example, a Jack Russel Terrier has short fur and long ears, meaning they are at the highest risk of below zero temperatures; meanwhile, a Border Collie has long fur, short ears and prefers cold climates so they will be more acclimated to colder weather.

“However, as a general warning, all dogs are at high risk of hypothermia when temperatures hit below -6°C.”

These are their top tips for looking after dogs in cold temperatures.

Limit your dog’s time outside:

Dogs can suffer from frostbite, most often on their earflaps. It is best to keep dogs inside when possible when temperatures hit below 7°C, with short visits outside to help your pet acclimate to the freezing temperatures. This can be done whenever your dog needs to use the toilet

Bundle your dog in warm clothes:

Sometimes a thick coat is not enough to keep even the furriest of dogs warm. Consider treating your dog to a sturdy winter coat or a fitted sweater. Freezing temperatures can also do damage to dogs’ feet; protect their paws by equipping them with dog-friendly boots.

Clean your dog’s feet after a walk:

During cold weather, rock salt will be utilised by local authorities to melt snow or ice to make sidewalks easier to traverse. However, after walking your dog, you should take care to clean your pet’s feet with warm water, as rock salt can damage paw pads, and can even be toxic to your dog if they try to lick the substance.