Trainer reveals the surprising reason why your dog is misbehaving and what you can do about it

Smiling woman wrapped in a blanket in the forest with her dog
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Have you noticed that your dog has started acting up more lately? Perhaps they're normally fairly well behaved but have begun to engage in behaviors you'd prefer they wouldn't like barking at strangers or chewing the furniture.

Well, before you go in search of tips for how to deal with a badly behaved dog, you may be as surprised as we were to learn that it's very normal to see shifts in our dogs behavior when the colder weather sets in. 

"During this time of year, I normally hear one complaint from my clients and that's that their dogs have a sudden change in behavior," says expert trainer Amelia Steele

According to Steele, this is incredibly common, which is why she's put together an Instagram video revealing why this happens and what you can do about it. 

So, if you're going to be out and about with your canine companion this winter throwing about the best puppy toys, read on to discover Steele's advice for keeping them happy and comfortable. 

"The most common reason for behavioral changes at this time of year is the impact that the cold weather has on your dog's joints," Steele explains.

"When the weather gets colder and when we find our dogs going from hot to cold temperatures constantly this can actually cause their joints to become inflamed, which in turn can cause them to experience pain or feel generally uncomfortable."

Thankfully, Steele says there are three things you can do to help them:

1. Invest in a really good dog bed: A comfortable bed is really important if your pup is experiencing joint pain. "This could be something like a trampoline bed or just making sure that the bed that they have is soft and can support them," says Steele. 

"You don't want them lying on the cold floor because again, that's going to make their joints worse."

2. Help your dog to stay warm when you're out on a walk: "Whether that's getting them a good coat or putting them in a fleece, it's really important to keep them warm when you're out and about, especially if the temperatures start to get really low."

3. Make sure you have a good joint care routine: Steele explains that this helps to make sure you don't get extra problems on top of any existing joint pain your dog may already be experiencing. 

So there you have it, three things you can do to help your canine stay happy and comfortable during the colder months.

And for more great advice to help make walkies a joy when the mercury plummets, check out these winter dog walking tips

Kathryn Williams
Freelance writer

Kathryn is a freelance writer who has been a member of the PetsRadar family since it launched in 2020. Highly experienced in her field, she's driven by a desire to provide pet parents with accurate, timely, and informative content that enables them to provide their fur friends with everything they need to thrive. Kathryn works closely with vets and trainers to ensure all articles offer the most up-to-date information across a range of pet-related fields, from insights into health and behavior issues to tips on products and training. When she’s not busy crafting the perfect sentence for her features, buying guides and news pieces, she can be found hanging out with her family (which includes one super sassy cat), drinking copious amounts of Jasmine tea and reading all the books.