Pet owners be aware! Sweaters and jackets are not only for small pups to enjoy! Dog breeds of all shapes and sizes aren’t equipped for cold weather and could use a little help. Don’t put your pup in danger this winter by leaving them out in the cold. What do you need to know about sweaters and jackets for dogs? Zippylife is here help!
A dog’s healthy body temperature is normally between 100 to 102 Degrees Fahrenheit. A dog whose temperature drops below 95 Degrees F is actually at risk of hypothermia and can die. Basically, if you haven’t caught on already- It’s incredibly important to protect your pup from the elements and make sure they stay nice and warm. Not only will it keep your dog safe, but keeping your dog warm improves their general health. It stops them from using their body’s energy on making and conserving heat and instead allows their bodies to continue to function normally.
Does my dog need a sweater?
Many dogs are not as equipped for winter as you may think. For them, going outside in just their fur is the same as if we were to go outside without any clothes on. So what breeds of dogs should be wearing sweaters? You might be surprised by the answer:
- Small dogs like toy breeds, most terriers, and pinscher breeds.
- Any size dog that has a thin coat or short hair.
- Older dogs with weaker immune systems and joints.
- Thin dogs.
- Sick dogs.
Remember: Larger dogs with dense hair (like Siberian huskies, the malamute, and the saint Bernard) don’t need additional insulation and a sweater can actually make them very uncomfortable and even cause them to overheat.
What Kind of Sweater do you need?
There are a lot of sweater and jacket options out there for your pooch, so how do you choose what is the best? Fabrics like wool are very warm and insulating, but won’t hold up outside and can be itchy for dogs. Before you buy the wrong thing, think about what your dog will be exposed too.
Wind: You should purchase a two layer jacket. An outer wind and waterproof layer made of a breathable poly-fabric and an inner fleece layer. Weatherbeeta has great options for dogs!
Cold: This jacket can be as easy as a single layer of fleece. If you like wool better, just make sure the sweater is a good blend of washable wool and cotton or acrylic to cut down on itchiness. Check out these options: The snuggy & sweaters
Rain/Snow: If you are in a cold climate, a snow jacket should meet the same requirements for wind. If you are in a warmer climate and need rain protection, you can get a jacket made out of breathable poly fabric. Arrowhead has a great line of cold weather protection jackets. Fido’s rain and wind gear have some great alternatives for warmer weather climates.
Hunting/sporting dogs: If you have a pup that spends a lot of time outside for hunting or herding. You are going to want to make sure they have plenty of protection! Depending on what types of weather you will encounter make sure you leave home prepared. Check out the Avery Neoprene Dog Parka made specifically for hunting dogs.
Get the perfect fit:
For dogs, the fit of the sweater is a lot more important than it is for us humans. You really want to make sure you find a well-fitting sweater otherwise, it could just turn into a nightmare. Why? Well…
- You want to make sure your dog can’t pull it off
- You don’t want the sweater to drag on the ground
- A good fit ensures that the sweater won’t be loose and could get caught on anything.
- A sweater that is snug without being tight makes better insulation.
Honestly, the best way to get the right fit is by trying it on first. There are tons of cute sweaters available online, but there is no way to ensure it will be the perfect fit. If you do want to purchase a sweater online, make sure to check with the store that they take returns on pet sweaters. Many stores won’t accept anything back once it has been on an animal. Checking beforehand might prevent you from making a big mistake.
So make sure to keep your pets safe this winter, it won’t be a decision you will ever regret. Your pup will be warm and happy and you won’t be able to get over how cute they look in their new sweater! Now that is something we can get behind.
Photo via unsplash.com