We've always practiced and trained (dock diving) through the winter in a pool. So water temps were never a problem for us through the winter.
This year, however, we do not have our practice pool so we are using the lake. How cold is too cold to take the dogs in a lake? Keep in mind, here's how our weather goes here:
daytime temps 40s and 50s (occasional 30s)
nighttime temps 30s and sometimes 20s
What do y'all think?
When the temps are in the 50s or below, I don't encourage HK to go in the water. i.e. I don't walk close to the river but she may, I don't throw sticks or balls for her to retrieve, but she may see one floating out there and go after it. For me it is reall how long it will take her to dry off and how wet the car is going to get.
When the temps are 30-40, I really try to avoid the water, but won't stop her if she chooses and she does.
Once the ice begins to form, until it is gone, we stay away. Far enough away that it is not an option. I would, but do not look forward to the opportunity to go in to save her.
All that said, Labs were bred to retrieve fishing nets in frigid water off the coast of Labrador!!!!!
Hershey Kisses, In charge of getting Ed out to the dog park so that he gets some exercise.
In my sig picture, Bruno is soaked, just came out of the lake after going in to buzz some ducks. When he got back in the yard, he did some zoomie butt tuckin' so the cold didn't bother him at all. He jumps in the lake at any opportunity regardless of temperature, but I didn't leave him outside wet for very long in below freezing weather. I don't think the 40's or 50's would bother them at all.
I know a lot of people in MI who let their dogs swim 24/7/365. I just get worried when there is ice because I don't feel like jumping in to rescue Abbey if she falls in. Labs have the coats that are meant to allow them to swim in ice cold water.. that's what they were bred for back in the day. A smaller version of a Newfie.
It is often in the 30's when we walk in the winter and mine go diving into the water -- literally. :whatever: I don't encourage them in at this time of the year, but only because I have to dry them off. I can't say that the temperature bothers them at all but they do have thick double coats.
So, I would have no issues with mine whatsoever with mine swimming in the temps you describe. If I had single coated dogs I might think otherwise.
For extra protection you could buy a couple of hunting vest that you see on Cappy_TX's dogs.