Cani Corsi can live inside or outside, thought they tend to prefer being outdoors. But what if it’s really cold outside? Can a Cane Corso live outside in the winter?
The simple answer is: a Cane Corso can live outside during winter months in moderate climates, but they cannot live outside in extremely cold weather.
Continue reading to learn more about leaving your Cane Corso outside during the winter…
How Cold Is Too Cold for a Cane Corso?
The Cane Corso is certainly a breed that enjoys spending most of their time outdoors, provided the climate is relatively mild. Even though they can tolerate both cold and hot weather to a degree, they don’t like to be on the extreme end of either spectrum.
Keep in mind, the Cane Corso is an ancient Italian breed. Italy has a Mediterranean climate, characterized by hot, dry summers and damp, mild winters. The average winter temperature in Italy ranges from about 43º F to 58º F, depending on the region.
As a general rule of thumb, if the weather drops to the 30s, you should put a doggy sweater or coat on them. If it gets colder than that, you should bring them inside.
If you live in an extremely cold climate, such as somewhere along the US/Canadian border, you should not leave your Cane Corso outside during the winter, and you should always put a coat on them when you take them out.
Acclimating Your Cane Corso to Cold Weather
A Cane Corso can adapt to a cold climate the more they are exposed to it, though some will adjust better than others. Most Cani Corsi will grow a thick undercoat during the winter, but some will not. If your Cane Corso already has a very short, thin coat, there’s a chance they might not adapt well to the cold.
The best thing to do is to pay close attention to them as the weather cools down, and determine whether or not their coat is thickening. If it’s not, your safest bet is to keep them indoors.
Cani Corsi also need ample time to adapt to the cold. That means you should start training them to live outdoors in the summer or early fall so they can gradually get used to the dropping temperatures, which will help them develop their thick winter undercoat.
Lastly, it’s important that your Cane Corso has a shelter outside, preferably one that is insulated. That may seem to contradict the idea of living outside, but when it is raining, snowing, or the winds are high, your Cane Corso will want to seek shelter from the elements, just as you would. They will also prefer to sleep in a warm shelter at night when the temperature drops to its lowest point.
If your Cane Corso is a still a young pup – less than six months – they are too young and fragile to be left outside in the cold. On the other end of the spectrum, if your Cane Corso is a senior – seven years or older – they will begin to lose their tolerance for the cold, and it’s best to bring them inside.
Risk of Hypothermia
When temperatures drop below freezing, your Cane Corso is at risk of hypothermia. It is important they stay dry and clothed to prevent this. You should also know, very young and very old dogs are much more susceptible to hypothermia.
Symptoms of hypothermia in dogs are:
- Pale or blue gums and eyelids
- Fur and skin cold to the touch
- Body temperature below 95º F
- Lethargy and weakness
- Trouble walking
- Trouble breathing
- Dilated pupils
- Slow heart rate
If you notice any of these symptoms in your Cane Corso, you need to get them in a warm place immediately and wrap them in a blanket. If the symptoms are severe, such as if they are in a stupor or unconscious, you need to get them to an animal hospital as quickly as possible.
American Kennel Club. Cane Corso. Retrieved from https://www.akc.org/dog-breeds/cane-corso/
Weather Online. Italy. Retrieved from https://www.weatheronline.co.uk/reports/climate/Italy.htm
DogTime. Hypothermia in Dogs: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments. Retrieved from https://dogtime.com/dog-health/general/19237-hypothermia-in-dogs