Clothing for Winter Walkies

Walking your dog can be one of the greatest pleasures of pet ownership; not only is it a chance to bond with your canine companion, but it’s also great exercise for you both. If the weather turns foul, however, it’s understandably a little less appealing. When the wind is howling and the rain is lashing down, you’d much rather stay inside where it’s warm… but you know they need to go out, so you bundle up in your nice warm jacket, scarf, hat and gloves and get ready to go.

But, while you’re now warm in your winter clothing, what about your dog?

Depending on the breed (and a range of other factors) your devoted doggy pal may be just as much in need of a little outdoor protection as you are. Dogs have evolved for a wide range of different needs and environments, and not all of them are happy in the cold.

If you’ve got a Siberian Husky, a Malamute or a Saint Bernard, then adorable doggy jackets should definitely not feature on your list of must-haves; these breeds, and others like them, are made for cold weather, with thick, dense fur that will keep them cosy even on the coldest day.

“I laugh at your silly jumpers!”

However, if you’ve got a Chihuahua, a Greyhound or a terrier or pinscher breed with short, thin fur, their natural jackets won’t give them the same kind of insulation, and if it gets really cold they might appreciate the warmth of an extra layer – even if they don’t necessarily approve of the pattern!

Other factors to consider include the age and condition of your pet, and their size – senior dogs, those with certain health conditions, and small dogs are more likely to feel the chill.

If you feel that your four legged friend needs a cosy winter jacket for walkies, then you should look for something that fits well and that is easy to care for. It needs to be comfortable, otherwise your dog is simply not going to enjoy wearing it – and we all know what happens when a dog doesn’t want to wear something. It needs to leave their legs free for running around and relieving themselves, whilst covering the important areas. The material should be considered based on the conditions – if you’re going out in the rain or snow, a water-proof material like that used in people parkas is a good idea, whereas if it’s cold but dry wool or fleece is fine. You should also make sure that it doesn’t have any unnecessary bits (like buttons or bows) which could be chewed off.

“Can we talk about the hood on this jacket?”

The most important thing to remember is that whatever protection you put on your dog for winter walkies should come off when they come back indoors – overheating can be a serious issue for dogs, so no matter how cute they look in their jumper they shouldn’t be wearing it at home with the heating on.

Finally, doggy paws need attention whatever the breed – most dogs dislike booties, but if it’s icy out and the roads and paths have been salted you should make sure that you clean your pup’s paws as soon as you get home, otherwise the grit and salt could irritate them.

Here at the Dog School, we offer affordable dog walking services in Surrey which are ideal for making sure that your pet’s exercise requirements are met whatever the weather. Whether you need a one-off temporary solution or long-term dog walking assistance, we will be happy to help. For more information or to arrange a free initial consultation, get in touch with us on 07734 447 812 today.