Climate Change for Dogs

Mr Yip is a scruffy terrier cross, and came from indeterminate origins in Ireland. That doesn’t detract from his cuteness one iota, of course 😉. Mr Yip’s fur is coarse, wiry and thick, mostly white with grey and black and a smidgeon of brown, and he also has black ticking underneath all that white. In a word, he’s Unique!

Now, Ireland is in the Northern Hemisphere, as we all know, and Australia is in the Southern Hemisphere. The seasons therefore are reversed. 

When it’s Winter in Ireland (December-Feb), it’s Summer in Australia. 

When it’s Spring in Ireland (Mar – May), it’s Autumn in Australia. 

When it’s Summer in Ireland (June- August), it’s Winter in Australia. 

When it’s Autumn in Ireland (September – November), it’s Spring in Australia.

Well, no one told Mr Yip that. When he first arrived in Australia in December 2010, it was from a below-freezing Minus 10 degrees in Dublin, to a scorching 35 degrees in Perth. Mr Yip was in his full winter furcoat, and he must have suffered in the sudden change in temperature. A month spent in Quarantine did not make him shed his winter coat. 

In fact, in the 6 years that Mr Yip has been in Australia, his fur habits have never adapted to the Australian climate. Hypoallergemic he most certainly is Not! True to his Northern Hemisphere nature, he sheds the most in Australia’s Winter, when he really should be at his fluffiest. And he’s a real fluffball at the height of the Australian Summer, when he should be thin and lean. 

So, if you’re reading this and are considering a tree change from one end of the world to the other, spare a thought for your pets. They may not necessarily ever change their shedding habits. Speaking of trees, we have also observed that some European trees planted in Australia also appear to Not acclimatize, even after many years…we have seen trees shedding their russet leaves in Spring instead of Autumn, or flowering in Winter. 

Dogs from cold climates with very thick coats, especially Huskies and Malamutes, suffer in the stifling Australian Summers, and a swimming pool or even a clamshell paddling pool, or regular showers to cool down, will help tremendously. 

So, if the Aussie lifestyle appeals to you, do spare a thought for your dogs and other pets, before buying that (very expensive) one-way ticket! 

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