Best Hot Weather Dogs and Their Characteristics

Some dogs are better hot weather dogs than others. While dogs are quite adaptable to different situations and locations, some breeds are better suited to certain climates than others naturally. Many of these breeds originated in warm climates and have short coats of fur or are light colored from generations of breeding and adaption to their environment.

While every dog will not possess every trait of typical hot weather dogs. Each dog that does well in hot weather will possess at least some of the below characteristics.

Common Characteristics of Hot Weather Dogs

  • Short Coat or No Hair and a Single Coat of Fur – Obviously, less fur or hair keeps the dog cooler. Some dogs will have a double coat of fur to insulate them against the cold or keep water away from their skin. Our hot weather dogs typically have just one coat of fur, if that. There are some warm weather dogs that are hairless.
  • Long, Slender Build – Many dogs ready for the heat are thin and tall and this allows them to cool down more efficiently. The more skin you have in relation to your body weight, the more rapidly you can cool off. It’s a skin-to-body-weight ratio thing.
  • Long Snout and Large Stand-Up Ears – A longer nose is able to process the hot air coming in from the environment faster and cool it down before it hits the lungs. Dogs with short snouts, or brachycephalic, like Pugs and French Bulldogs are not cut out for hot weather. Many hot weather dogs’ ears stand erect as they cool down faster than droopy ears.
  • Small Body Size – Just as large, thin dogs have an adequate amount of skin to cool off the size of their bodies, so do small dogs. Small dogs weigh so little that they are also well suited to warm climates.
  • Warm-Weather Roots – Many dogs simply originated in a region with a warm climate. Breeds that were developed in hot temperatures usually will have traits specific to that climate and better suited to warm weather naturally.
  • Light Fur Color – Dogs that do well in hot weather will typically have lighter colored fur or hair. These canines are white, tan, gray or some color combination thereof.

7 Hot Weather Dogs Perfect for Hot Climates

Australian Cattle Dog Stats – AKC Ranking: 51st Most Popular Dog in 2021. AKC Group: Herding. Height: 17-20 inches. Weight: 35-50 pounds.

ACDs, as they are affectionately referred to, are hardworking cattle herders from the Australian Outback. They have a short double coat of fur that keeps them cool enough during the high daytime temperatures but also insulated against the harsh temperature swing at night in the desert. The weather doesn’t bother them. They love to work no matter the temperature. It’s play to them.

One of the best all around hot weather dogs is the Australian Cattle Dog

Ibizan Hound Stats – AKC Ranking: 182nd Most Popular Dog in 2021. AKC Group: Hound. Height: 22-28 inches. Weight: 45-50 pounds.

This sighthound comes from the Balearic Islands off the coast of Spain and descended from an Egyptian hound. They were bred to sprint after prey in the hot sun. They are quite graceful while they run and can leap very high. This breed comes in solid red, solid white or white and red patterns. They are known to be rather stubborn, yet extremely enjoyable and lively.

Ibizan Hound with red and white markings

German Shorthaired Pointer Stats – AKC Ranking: 9th Most Popular Dog in 2021. AKC Group: Sporting. Height: 23-25 inches. Weight: 45-70 pounds dependent on sex.

Shorthairs, as they are appropriately named, have short fur with no undercoat. They are an eager gundog that loves exercise and staying busy. They were bred to go out with hunters on foot, but there is no limit to what they are good at. They not only point, but hunt and track also on both land and water. They love the water. Their short thin coat usually comes in solid liver (a reddish brown) or liver and white in patterns and speckles.

German Shorthaired Pointer patrolling the shore of a pond with lily pads floating

Airedale Terrier Stats – AKC Ranking: 62nd Most Popular Dog in 2021. AKC Group: Terrier. Height: 22-24 inches. Weight: 40-65 pounds.

The Airedale originated in England and is the largest of the terrier breeds standing almost two feet at the shoulders. This breed tolerates the warm weather quite well. Their coat looks wooly, but it is short and wiry which allows the heat to escape. It is best to keep them shaved down in the hotter months. Unlike most hot weather dogs, they have a double coat. They were bred to hunt on land and water and enjoy cooling off with a splash on a hot day. Airedales heads and ears are tan in color and the body is a mix of tan and black.

Airedale Terrier with tan head and legs and a black and tan body and tail.

Afghan Hound Stats – AKC Ranking: 114th Most Popular Dog in 2021. AKC Group: Hound. Height: 25-27 inches. Weight: 50-60 pounds.

The Afghan Hound is one of the hot weather dogs that does well in both extremes of temperature. It is hot by day and there are cold temperatures at night in the harsh mountainous, desert environment of Afghanistan. This breed does well in a hot climate because its long locks are a single coat. They do require weekly grooming to ensure they don’t get knots and tangles in their coat. Their coat is long, thick, and fine and protects them from the relentless rays of the sun. These sighthounds have been known to run 40 miles per hour.

Afghan Hound running around a dirt track

Chinese Crested Stats – AKC Ranking: 77th Most Popular Dog in 2021. AKC Group: Toy. Height: 11-13 inches. Weight: 8-12 pounds.

The Crested is an ancient breed that originated in Asia and most likely descended from hairless dogs brought over from Africa. The most well-known variety is hairless. These affectionate dogs have soft, silky hair on their heads, feet, and tips of the tail only. Like any hairless, or sparsely haired dogs, their pink and gray skin can sunburn easily, and precautions should be taken. There is a coated variety as well.

Chinese Crested Dog with no hair on body showing off pink and gray skin.

Italian Greyhound Stats – AKC Ranking: 73rd Most Popular Dog in 2021. AKC Group: Toy. Height: 13-15 inches. Weight: 7-14 pounds.

This diminutive sighthound has a thin frame and a short, single coat making the Italian Greyhound ideal for warm weather. They have very little body fat, so a coat or jacket is necessary in colder climates. A sunny hot climate makes them more comfortable. These hot weather dog’s origins date back 2000 years in the Mediterranean. Since then, they have been quite popular with royals including James I, Catherine the Great, Anne of Denmark, Frederick the Great of Prussia, and Queen Victoria.

Italian Greyhound with perked ears

Hot weather dogs are quite different from each other despite having some characteristics in common. Each of these breeds does well in hot weather due to place of origin, coat type, body size, coat color, stamina, or some combination of those characteristics. These dogs are also all different in stature, ranging from an 11-inch Chinese Crested to a 28-inch Ibizan Hound and would require different size dog doors.

PlexiDor Dog Doors has saloon style dog doors for doors, walls, and glass doors in two color choices. Our doors come in sizes small, medium, large and extra-large for pets up to 220 pounds. Contact our Customer Service department for questions or call 888-PET-DOOR today.