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To the Rescue: Does My Dog Need a Jacket?

I admit there's plenty of fashionable (and bizarre) dog clothing out there, but here's one of the most common questions I get: "Dogs have fur, isn't it silly to put anything else on them?" Well, the answer I give without fail is vague, but true: It depends. While a Samoyed in Minnesota may not need a heavy coat, it's possible that a Chihuahua may need one on a chilly night in the Valley. As a general guideline, smaller dogs with shorter coats will be more likely to need that extra layer than a larger, long-haired pet.
The best way to tell what your animal needs is to watch his behavior. If your Italian Greyhound is shivering or trying to enter every open door on his evening walk around the city, chances are, he'd appreciate an extra layer. Remember, more activity makes your pets warmer just like running will make you break into a sweat faster than a leisurely stroll, so a pup sitting outside will get colder than when chasing his pals around a NYC dog park. Use your judgment and don't let anyone else decide for you.

lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
My dog seems pretty good with cold. (I just got him recently, so I've yet to see how he does when the temperature really drops.) He's small, but he has a lot of fur, so I guess he's one of those iffy dogs. I have some coats and sweaters for him, so I'll be ready if I do find that he has a strong aversion to cold temperatures.
Ellenora Ellenora 8 years
Zena is a big cold wussy. She has a doggy puffer jacket and sometimes she still refuses to put a nose outside the back door! If we don't put the puffer jacket on, she comes in shaking. Even if she has the puffer on, she comes in and plunks down on top of the nearest human (read: Mom or me) to warm up and demands a blanket on top of her! She's such a wuss!
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 8 years
awww it's so true tho dbct!!! Their hair si so short and she barely even has hair on her belly yet! She loves playing outside, but she gets cold too fast. Espeically seeing as there is as much snow as she is tall right now!
dbcvt dbcvt 8 years
AH! to Lovely_1 and BloodyFuFu, i have a pittoo and i can't find stuff to fit her ANYWHERE! I'm so glad I'm not the only one who attempts to put clothes on a pit bull, because i am constantly made fun of! But her fur is so short and thin! (Besides the fact that she looks downright adorable in clothes...) I've searched and searched and searched. If anyone knows where i can get sweatshirts for my pit, let us all know!
wren1 wren1 8 years
The breeder I got my Italian Greyhound from said that if I'm cold, he's cold, so I use that as my guide.
Pets Pets 8 years
Here are some of my fave hoodies for large dogs:
Stupidasscat Stupidasscat 8 years
I have a pit as well as a greyhoud/sheppard mix and a good place to find clothes that fit are the smaller mom and pop pet stores ( i got a suede coat for like $30 or you could look at a feed/tack place instead of a petco type place they tend to be cheaper or when in doubt ebay as well or if you know someone who sews you can ask them to make one for you.
Renees3 Renees3 8 years
B-Bop wears sweaters when it gets cold. He's a warm weather dog for sure so when it gets chilly, he shivers and tries to burrow under anything warm! Good thing he doesn't mind sweaters!
eleigh eleigh 8 years
ok so that was supposed to be a smilely face at the end but it is decidedly not! sorry about that xo
eleigh eleigh 8 years
I have 2 IGs so they definitely need the help when it gets cold! However my bigger IG is actually too big for most clothing so I got him a dog blanket similar to the blankets used for horses Dover Saddlery has versions from about $15 to closer to $100 and they will fit larger dogs without restricting movement like a lot of sweaters can. Hope this helps you all with larger breed dogs! :o) xo
ComicsDiva ComicsDiva 8 years
My 13.9 year old Yorkie wears a heavy mini fleece as soon as the temp goes below 30 degrees. My 2 yr. old Lab/Pointer mix does not have a jacket, but will probably get one if it goes to 20 degrees with any consistency. We live in Northern Virginia. If you need boots for your larger dog check out
krae85 krae85 8 years
My puppy asks for a sweater before our walk, lol. But she also just loves to wear clothes.
BloodyFuFu BloodyFuFu 8 years
I'm with you Lovely_1! Harley is the biggest baby about cold, but it is really hard to find clothes for Pits. I have found one place with coats that are made to fit Pits, but you pay as much as you would for a people coat. I love my dog and I would spend it but my husband might not like the price so much.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 8 years
my girls poor paws get cold. She is only 7 months though so when it's minus 30 celsius I don't keep her outside for long :( It's jsut hard to find stuff for large doggies! Like that Pittie in that pic! WHERE CAN I GET PITBULL CLOTHES!?!?
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