With winter comes some extremely cold weather. There are snowstorms, ice, and subzero chills to contend with once the Autumn fades away. Unfortunately for dog owners, that means they have to brave the frigid temperatures to walk their dog and let them go to the bathroom. They may find themselves wondering if their dog needs an extra layer to keep them warm while they are outside. For some breeds, this is necessary to keep them comfortable and safe.
Which Breeds Need Clothes?
Some dogs are naturally capable of handling the cold. Robust breeds like Huskies and Malamutes have thick fur that protects them from freezing temperatures. Owners of those breeds may even notice that their dogs enjoy the snow, diving in and chasing snowballs without a care in the world.
Hypothermia in Dogs
However, breeds with short and/or thin fur do not fare so well when the weather turns icy. Cold-susceptible breeds might start to feel chilly in temperatures as high as 45 degrees. In some cases, they may develop hypothermia if left unprotected from the weather for too long. It is vital for dog owners to know the signs so they can keep their pets safe. These signs include the following.
- Cold feet
- Cold ears
- Rapid breathing
- Hair standing up
- Excessive urination
If a dog owner notices these signs when they are outside with their pet, they need to get their dog inside someplace warm immediately. After they have called their veterinarian, they need to dry their dog off with a warm towel and offer them room temperature water.
Susceptible Dog Breeds
Below is a list of breeds that may need an extra snuggly layer to protect them this winter.
Chihuahuas are a tiny little pup that emerged out of Mexico as early as the 9th century. They are ideal for hot, dry climates, but winter can take a massive toll on them. Their tiny frames and thin, single-layer fur make them highly susceptible to hypothermia in colder temperatures.
Small terriers, especially those with longer, wire-like fur like the Yorkshire Terrier, are much more susceptible to freezing temps than a dog with an average coat. That is because their hair-like fur holds water for longer, making it harder for them to stay warm once they become wet from ice or snow. These dogs should wear a coat to keep them dry and warm in the cold.
Corgis, Daschunds, and Basset Hounds
These low-profile breeds have short legs, making them lose heat faster than other dogs. Since they are so short, they come in direct contact with the snow. A protective layer can help keep them dry and warm when freezing precipitation hits.
Greyhounds, Whippets, and Dobermans
These breeds have small, lean bodies that make them capable of dispelling body heat in the hot summer. Unfortunately for them, this is not as beneficial in the winter. These breeds benefit significantly from a coat or sweater in the winter months.
Poodles have fluffy curls that require a lot of extra grooming all year long. Unfortunately, this extra care can limit a dog’s natural ability to keep themselves warm. Poodles who have recently been trimmed or shaved should especially have extra warm and protective layers.
Best Coats for Winter Weather
For anyone who sees their breed of dog listed above, or knows their dog is particularly uncomfortable outside in the cold, here is a list of the best clothes to keep their dog warm this winter.
Kurgo Waterproof Jacket with Fleece Lining
The Kurgo Waterproof Jacket with Fleece Lining is a workhorse dog jacket. It boasts a completely waterproof, incredibly durable rip-stop material. It is lined with fleece that helps keep dogs warm in harsh weather. It can be quickly taken on and off with the easy-to-use side buckles and features a flashing LED reflective strip for maximum visibility.
This coat is available in sizes ranging from small to x-large. A convenient opening on the back allows owners to use their dog’s favorite harness while on-the-go. The Kurgo Waterproof Dog Jacket can be bought on Amazon.com for $44.99.
Pehomie Panel Raincoat
The Pehomie Panel Raincoat is not only an excellent coat for wet, cold weather, but it is probably the most stylish of the jackets available. This coat is made of water repellent fabric to keep one’s pet dry in most weather. It has a front snapping closure and a Velcro cuff that makes the coat fit nicely against the dog’s body.
For those who want to match their outfit to their pet’s clothes, Pehom offers a matching color blocked V-neck panel pullover for humans. This high-end dog jacket can be picked up on the Pehom NYC website for just $80.
Pehom Pocket Hoodie
The Pehom Pocket Hoodie is another high-end, fashion-forward dog coat option. It features a zip pocket in the back that can store items like waste bags for owners on-the-go. It has a snap closure for easy removal, as well as a Velcro adjustment sleeve so it can be sized to fit one’s dog perfectly.
Perhaps the best of all its features is the feather padding. This lined pocket hoodie features an extra layer of feathers to keep even the most cold-susceptible pup from freezing when they are outside. This hoodie can be picked up on the Pehom NYC website for $85.
The Zack and Zoey Nor’easter Dog Blanket Coat
The Zack and Zoey Nor’easter Dog Blanket Coat is on the lower end of the pricing scale, but it still has some great features that dog owners are sure to love. Aside from the cute paw print detail, this coat is reversible and lined with 100% polyester fleece. It has a reflective stripe for increased visibility and is available in several colors.
The Zack and Zoey Nor’easter Dog Blanket Coat is available in sizes xx-small to xx-large so that one can find the perfect coat no matter the size of their dog. It can be purchased on Amazon.com for only $23.
Ruffwear K9 Fleece Lined Overcoat
The Ruffweat K9 Fleece Lined Overcoat is an amazingly high-quality utility jacket that is perfect for active dogs in the winter. It is lined with recycled polyester fleece for added warmth and reflective trim for increased visibility. Its outer layer is made of water-resistant fabric, so pet owners can be sure their canine companion stays dry when out in the snow.
A vital feature of this winter coat is the buckles on either side, which make it easy to take on and off. It is available in sizes ranging from xx-small to x-large and can be picked up on Amazon.com for $85.
Canine Styles Down Puffer CoatThe Canine Styles Down Puffer Coat is a durable and comfortable puffy-coat that is filled with 100% duck down. It is water-resistant as well as snow repellent, so dog owners know their pup is warm and dry. It is made to fit snugly so dogs can enjoy maximum protection from the elements.
This machine-washable dog jacket is available in eleven sizes, so any sized dog is able to use it. Dog owners can purchase this coat on the Canine Styles website for $125.
Hurtta Casual Quilted Overall Dog CoatThe Hurtta Casual Quilted Overall Dog Coat is an especially protective dog coat. It features complete body and leg protection, so even breeds like greyhounds and whippets can enjoy the outdoors in the winter. It has an adjustable elastic waistband, which allows a dog to move freely.
This water and dirt repellent dog coat is available in 9 sizes. It can be purchased on Amazon.com for $75.
Gooby Padded VestThe Gooby Padded Vest is an ultra-warm, lightweight vest that helps dogs stay comfortable in frigid weather. The vest is water-resistant and machine washable, making it a practical choice for dog owners. It has a zipper closure for maximum protection and features a leash attachment.
The Gooby Padded Vest comes in sizes ranging from x-small to x-large and is available in a variety of colors. Dog owners can pick this vest up on Amazon.com for $32.50.
The Bottom Line
Anyone who has ever owned a dog knows how deeply one can fall in love with a pet. Most dog owners would do anything to keep their canine companion safe and comfortable. Since a dog’s needs do not change with the seasons, it is vital that dog owners find ways to accommodate them during the harsh winter months.
Though dog coats may seem silly to some, they are an essential garment for many breeds. In order to protect pets from the dangers of hypothermia, dog owners must provide them with warmest possible layers. There are wonderful options for every size, breed, budget, and style, so dog owners can easily find the best fit for them and their pup. Give them the gear they need to enjoy the winter and be sure that your beloved pet is safe outside all year round.