Tips for Selecting Dog Jackets for Spring and Summer


Reflective Dog Raincoat
Photo via orvis.com

“We have a pair of West Highland White Terriers and rain can play havoc with them as it takes a while to get them dry. These raincoats really do the job and minimize the drying job. We would highly recommend this product.” – Orvis customer from Tennessee

If you’re like me, inclement weather isn’t often a reason to stay indoors. So when I rotate my clothes for the warm seasons, I keep key pieces of outerwear handy. But do our best friends need dog jackets or raincoats when the weather turns stormy like we do? Or does their nature-made coat have them covered when harsh weather blows in the gentler months?

The answer depends on a few things. Where do you and your pooch like to roam? When do you head out on your journeys? And how long do you stay out? Read on for tips on picking the best balmy-weather basics for your dog.

High-elevation hikes: For extended hikes up a mountainside with your dog, keep in mind that the temperature drops the higher you go. Sometimes the change can be steep, especially at dawn and dusk. And on long hikes, the sunny, placid weather you set out in can suddenly turn nippy, blustery and rainy. In changeable conditions, layering options for you and your pooch are important.

Rainy hikes: Whether you’re taking your dog for a walk around the block or along the Appalachian trail, a raincoat will help keep his crucial midsection warm, comfortable and dry in drizzle or downpour. This is especially important if you’ve got a pooch that shivers or looks miserable in light and heavy rain.

After-dark hikes: A dog safety jacket with reflective patches is important if you often enjoy nighttime walks with your dog. At the side of a busy street with cars, drivers will spot your pooch with ease. If you camp with your dog, you’ll be able to see him when you go for a short stroll beyond the campfire light at night.

For swimming: Not all dogs are strong swimmers and some tire easily in the water. For them, a dog life jacket is a good idea even for short swims. For dogs that love plunging into the drink, a life vest is a good idea if they tend to swim far from shore. That way they’ll have support if they tire out before turning back. On a boat far from port, dogs need a life jacket handy just like you.

Finally, consider the coat your best pal was born with and your dog’s general health. Small breeds, short-haired breeds and elderly dogs have more difficulty maintaining body temperature and can benefit from dog jackets year round.

With comfortable jackets handy for you and Spot, you’ll both feel perfectly comfortable even if the weather conditions don’t perfectly match the season.

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