When the cold and wet weather of winter arrives, people aren’t the only ones who have trouble keeping warm and staying dry. Even the most hardy dog breeds might reconsider going for a walk on a day when there is a strong wind, snow, mud, and ice in the forecast. Bad weather doesn’t have to mean a day spent cooped up indoors, though, if your dog is wearing a warm jacket that will protect him from the rain and the cold.
There are so many different types of dog snow jackets on the market, from parkas to snowsuits to blankets, that it can be difficult to determine which one is the most appropriate for your dog and the activities that they partake in throughout the winter. In order to have a better understanding of the market, we spoke with 13 dog walkers and trainers residing in places that are ranked among the snowiest and coldest in the United States. Following that, we studied their thoughts on the characteristics, styles, and brands that constitute the greatest dog jackets in order to come up with our recommendations for dogs of varying sizes, shapes, and requirements.
The Powder Hound Jacket from Ruffwear protects your dog from the elements by providing complete belly coverage and an insulated top layer, ensuring that he stays warm and dry no matter what the day brings.
The jacket is insulated and lined, provides full coverage over the chest and belly, is water resistant, and has reflective trim.
Negatives: It’s expensive, and you have to wear the harness over your jacket.
- Sizes: 6 sizes, XXS to big
- Green, red, and blue are the three colors.
- Instructions for washing: can be washed in the machine and hung to dry
The Powder Hound from Ruffwear is a high-quality jacket that will keep your dog warm and dry in winter circumstances that include being cold, damp, and windy. The owner of Denver Dog Joggers in Denver, Colorado, Jacob Venter, claims that the jacket is not only water-resistant but also fits tightly enough to prevent snow from building up inside. This is according to the information provided by the jacket.
The dog industry professionals that we consulted for this guide unanimously agreed that Ruffwear is the best brand in its category. According to Krissia Chanto, co-owner of Rock Paw Pet Care in Boulder, Colorado, Ruffwear carries the greatest equipment for canine companions. The proprietor of Come, Sit, Stay in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Megan Selheim, shared the same sentiment. She stated that Ruffwear coats are of a great quality and have a lengthy lifespan.
The upper section of the Powder Hound Jacket is insulated with recycled polyester, while the lower section is elastic and form-fitting, with cap sleeves that extend over the front legs and covering that extends all the way to the chest and belly. The inside of the jacket is lined with a soft material to minimize chafing and other forms of discomfort. A single zipper that extends the length of the left side of it makes it simple and quick to put on and take off the item.
At night, you will be more visible thanks to the reflective trim, and there is a loop at the back of the neck so that you can attach an additional light if necessary. This jacket does not feature a hole in the back where a leash can be attached to a harness that is worn underneath it; nonetheless, it is form fitting enough that most harnesses can be worn comfortably over the exterior of the jacket.
During outdoor excursions in the snow, sleet, wind, and cold, the insulated Hurtta Expedition Parka moves with an active dog to keep both of them protected from the elements.
Insulated and lined, provides full coverage over the chest and belly, is waterproof, is built to move with an energetic dog, and features reflective trim are all positive features.
Pricey is a con.
- There are 16 different sizes ranging from 8 to 32 inches in length.
- Black, red, blue, and orange are the colors.
- Instructions for washing: can be washed in the machine and hung to dry
The insulated Expedition Parka from Hurtta will keep your dog warm and dry no matter how much they like spending time outdoors throughout the winter. This coat, which was designed in Finland to survive the severe winters in the Nordic countries, is flexible enough to move with an active dog and offers a wide range of motion. “It’s easy to put on and take off, warm, waterproof, and sturdy,” said Lori Riegler, the owner of Off Leash MKE in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. “It’s also fashionable,” she said. “I would like to have one for myself!”
The Expedition Parka is constructed from a laminated water- and windproof nylon fabric, and it is designed to withstand temperatures as low as -20 degrees Fahrenheit. The jacket is worn by pulling it over the head and chest, then wrapping it around the belly, and finally fastening it with a single buckle that can be adjusted. It has an elastic drawstring cord that may be adjusted to conform to the specific contours of a dog’s head and shoulders, as well as the wide snood that it has.
The lining of the parka is made of a breathable, comfortable fabric on the inside. It has extremely visible reflective piping that is wrapped around the exterior of it. Elastic parts at the front legs flex with the movement of a dog, and elastic straps at the rear end of the harness can be placed over the back legs for additional support and safety. There is a hole in the back that can be threaded with a leash so that it may be attached to the harness that is worn underneath the jacket.
The Expedition Parka is available in a wide range of sizes, which is one of the features that contributes to its many positive aspects. There are a total of 16 different size options available for this brand, including two that are long but narrow, which are ideal for dogs with a “hot dog” shape, and two that are narrow but wide, which are designed for dogs with a “bulky” chest.
The Hurtta Expedition Parka is not inexpensive like the Ruffwear Powder Hound, our top pick for the finest overall product; nevertheless, what you get for your money is something that is long-lasting and hard-working enough to last a lifetime.
The Canada Pooch Slush Suit provides full-body protection that is resistant to water and helps keep snow, slush, and salt off the dog’s paws.
Insulated and lined, covers the entire body, resists water, and has reflective trim are all positive features.
Cons: Only supplied in two colors, dogs that are sensitive to handling may have difficulty with the leg holes, and it’s expensive for large dogs.
- Lengths range from 8 to 28 inches in length across 11 different sizes.
- Pink and black are the colors.
- Instructions for washing: can be washed in the machine and hung to dry
If there is snow, wind, or freezing rain in the forecast, the Canada Pooch Slush Suit is prepared to keep your dog warm and dry from head to toe no matter what the weather brings. The plush polyester lining of the full-body onesie helps to insulate your dog from the chilly temperatures, and it covers the sections of your dog’s body that are the most sensitive.
According to Sydney Fontaine, proprietor of Zippy Pet Care in Chicago, Illinois, who lives in Illinois, “[My dog] and I are big admirers of the Canada Pooch Slush Suit.” The fact that it can also be worn as a full-body rain jacket makes it an excellent choice for someone with his thick, curly hair.
The Slush Suit is a garment that the dog steps into and then zips closed down the length of the right side of their body. According to Melody Koney, a dog walker with Windy City Paws in Chicago, Illinois, this style not only fits nicely on the majority of dogs but also helps keep them warm when they are out and about in the chilly winter weather. Adjusting the fit of the suit is made easier by the presence of a drawstring cord at the neck as well as two snaps on each ankle.
The outside layer of the jacket is made out of polyester that is resistant to water, and for added visibility, reflective tape runs down the zipper. On the Canada Pooch website, there is a breed sizing tool that can assist you in determining which size is most appropriate for your canine companion. According to Fontaine, having a suit that is fully lined on the inside is an essential aspect to have in order to stay warm in Chicago during the winter. “The back and spine are where dogs store the most of their body heat, so insulating those areas should be your primary priority,” she explained. In addition to this, it features a hole in the back where a harness may be worn so that a leash can be attached to it.
Sensitive dogs may have difficulty wearing the suit because it requires each leg to be inserted individually in its own opening. However, most dogs are able to successfully wear the suit. In addition, the price is reasonable for tiny dogs, but it skyrockets to $85 for larger dogs, which is the maximum it will cost you. Nevertheless, the Canada Pooch Slush Suit will keep your dog warm and dry in the snow and slush, regardless of whether you reside in colder climates or frequently escape to the mountains.
A warm and comfortable option for everyday use during the winter months is the incredibly inexpensive Frisco Boulder Plaid Insulated Puffer Coat.
Insulated and lined, as well as resistant to moisture
Minimal protection for the belly area, may not be able to withstand strong rain or significant snow, and there is no reflective trim.
- Sizes: 7 sizes, XS to XXXL
- Red, blue, and pink are the colors.
- Instructions for washing: can be washed in the machine and dried in the dryer
According to Stephanie Gonzales, who owns Maw and Paws Dog Walking in Brooklyn, New York, Frisco’s selection of reasonably priced dog snow jackets don’t just look pretty; they also offer an excellent quality alternative to more expensive pet wear. The Frisco Boulder Plaid Insulated Puffer Coat, in example, is an excellent choice for situations that involve chilly weather and dampness due to its quilted, water-resistant polyester shell and luxurious fleece inner.
The Boulder Plaid Insulated Puffer can be quickly and easily put on your dog and is held in place by two velcro straps that go under the dog’s belly and around the dog’s neck. Because of this, it is an excellent choice for active dogs that are unable to remain still for the length of time required to go through narrow leg holes and for dogs that are uncomfortable having a jacket pulled over their heads.
Because the jacket leaves the belly and chest mostly exposed, you may want to put on a second layer on days when it is rainy or snowy and your dog is likely to kick up a lot of bone-chilling water and muck. This is especially important if the temperature is below freezing.
This puffer is made to accommodate a variety of body shapes and sizes. “Because Rocko, my dog, is a Chiweenie, it can be challenging to locate clothing or accessories that accommodate his long and slender torso while also offering sufficient length to keep his little butt toasty. It would appear like Frisco has that worked out “said Gonzales.
Through a hole on the back of the puffer jacket, a harness that is worn underneath the jacket can be attached to a leash. When it’s time to clean the jacket after it’s been through its share of muck and salt, simply place it in the washing machine and then the dryer.
This coat may not be able to keep your dog dry in persistent rain or deep snow, and it does not include reflective trim, but it is a good everyday alternative that won’t break the bank and will keep your dog warm and happy in the winter.
The adjustable chest strap of the weatherproof and insulated Weatherbeeta Comfitec Reflective Parka 300D is designed to accommodate dogs with broad and barrel-chested chests.
Insulated and lined, it covers the dog’s chest and belly completely, it can be adjusted to accommodate dogs with chests that are broad or uneven in size, it is waterproof, and it has reflective trim.
Hand washing is recommended, and there are just two color options available.
- Lengths range from 12 to 32 inches in length across 11 different sizes.
- Orange and yellow are the colors.
- Instructions for washing: can be washed in the machine on the gentle cycle, although hand washing is preferred.
The Comfitec Reflective Parka 300D Deluxe Dog Coat from Weatherbeeta is designed to comfortably suit dogs with broad, barrel, or irregularly shaped chests. These dogs sometimes find that ordinary coats are too snug for them. This snow jacket is waterproof, has insulation, and completely covers the chest and belly, making it ideal for keeping dogs of any size warm and dry in the snow.
The velcro fastening, which can be seen on Weatherbeeta’s coat, was recommended to us by a few of the dog experts that we interviewed. According to Anderson, “I don’t like coats that have buttons or zippers on them simply because it makes them more difficult to use.” [Citation needed] “When my dogs are wriggling to get outside, I prefer to get them ready and out the door as quickly as I can, which is why velcro is my greatest friend,” said the owner of the dogs. Because the strap on the Comfitec Reflective Parka wraps across the chest and belly, it may be adjusted to fit dogs with narrow chests by pulling it tighter, or it can be adjusted to accommodate dogs with wider chests by securing it more loosely across their bodies.
The parka features a broad collar that can be worn either turned up or down, and it also has a hole at the back that can be used to link a leash to a harness that is worn underneath the garment. The parka can move with your dog thanks to the elastic in the chest, and the tail end of the parka has elastic straps that can be placed over the dog’s legs for additional safety.
This coat has a fleece lining and is filled with polyester material, both of which are designed to keep a dog with medium-thick fur warm even in temperatures that are close to freezing. Reflective tape runs along the edges of the polyester exterior, ensuring that your dog is easily visible both during the day and at night. You’ll need to look in other places if, on the other hand, you’d like the winter gear that your dog wears to be a bit less noticeable. Even while this jacket can be machine washed using the delicate cycle and cold water, Weatherbeeta suggests that you hand wash it with a gentle detergent.
How to properly measure your dog for a winter coat
It’s not always as easy as picking between a small, medium, and large size when it comes to finding a snow jacket that will fit your dog properly. A dog that is considered “small” may fit better in a large-size jacket, but a dog that is lean and lanky may require a jacket that is a size or two smaller than what is typically considered “small.” Take out the measuring tape and perform the math to determine your dog’s weight, length, and chest circumference before purchasing a snow jacket for him.
The length of the dog’s body is the most important factor to consider when choosing the appropriate size coat for a dog. It is recommended that you take the measurement of your dog while they are standing and at ease. The measurement should be taken from the base of the tail to the point where the shoulder blades meet. If the measurements for each size are close, you should select the larger of the two available options. There are times when a brand will propose a breed type or body weight that is normally appropriate for its various size options. This can be helpful, but you shouldn’t rely on it as your only guide; the body types of different dogs of the same weight might range significantly from one another.
Chest girth: Because the majority of coats do not have any adjustment options around the chest area, it is essential to get this measurement correct. This holds especially true for puppies with large chests or barrel chests. When your dog is standing, measure the diameter of their chest at its widest point, which is directly behind their front legs. This will give you an accurate reading of their chest girth. If your dog’s dimensions lie between sizes, you should select the larger of the two options. If you have a dog that is very active and performs a lot of running and jumping, you might want to add one to two inches to your measurement to ensure that your dog has complete freedom of movement when wearing the jacket.
Measure around the widest area of the neck, just below where the person’s collar rests, to achieve an accurate neck girth measurement for a garment that does not have an adjustable opening at the front of the neck. When in doubt, choose for the larger size, as is the case with the other measures.
The drop describes how low a jacket hangs on a dog’s body and legs and is measured in inches. If the jacket is too lengthy for them, it may limit their ability to move freely. It is possible that if it is too short, it will not give sufficient coverage. Compare the length of the jacket to the length of your dog by measuring from the base of the tail down the hind leg to the ankle just above the paw. This will help you determine how the drop of the jacket will lay on your dog. The optimal length for a jacket is one that covers the torso but comes no further than the middle of the leg.
Protection for dogs in the cold weather
When the temperature outside lowers, a dog that isn’t dressed appropriately for the weather runs the risk of getting frostbite or being too cold to survive. Even though some dog breeds are more susceptible to the cold than others, a good rule of thumb to follow during the winter months is that if it’s too cold for you, it’s too cold for them, according to Dr. Zay Satchu, chief veterinary officer and co-founder of Bond Vet in New York City, New York.
According to Satchu, a dog experiencing chilly weather may tremble, hunch their body, lift or hold their paws off the ground, or seek out warmth. A dog that is left outside in the cold without supervision during periods of cold weather may grow dangerously cold without your knowledge, despite the fact that the indicators mentioned above may be clear while you are there with them. When the temperature of a dog’s body goes too low, hypothermia is a genuine risk, not to mention the fact that prolonged exposure to extremely cold temperatures can cause frostbite on exposed regions such as the dog’s ears, nose, and paws.
According to what Satchu indicated, there is no risk involved in putting a coat on your dog if you are experiencing extreme cold. “They are more likely to let you know they are feeling warm by panting than they are to let you know they are chilly,” she said. “They are more likely to let you know they are feeling toasty by panting.” It is far simpler to bring a dog that is too hot to the desired temperature by removing an outer covering than it is to bring a dog that is ice cold to the desired temperature.
A dog’s sensitive paws need protection from the snow, ice, and salt that can be found on sidewalks, and boots can provide such protection. Satchu compared wearing a bootie to wearing gloves during the winter months. “Booties are similar to that,” he explained.
Unless you have a hardy Northern breed such as a husky or Bernese mountain dog, you should bring an outdoor dog inside when the temperature drops below freezing. This is especially important if you live in an area with harsh winters. And if the temperature is low enough that you need to cover every exposed area of your skin in order to feel at least a modicum of comfort, you should limit the amount of time you spend outside with your dog to just short potty breaks rather than going on longer walks with him.
If your dog has been exposed to temperatures that are exceptionally high and is exhibiting signs such as lethargy, muscle stiffness, weakness, decreased mental awareness, or loss of consciousness, you need to contact your veterinarian as soon as possible. These symptoms of hypothermia pose a serious risk to one’s life.
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