How To Know When To Dress Your Dog (4 Criteria You Should follow)

How To Know When To Dress Your Dog (4 Criteria You Should follow)
Look at this dog in a coat!” – this is casual phrase I catch when walking my Italian greyhounds in a cold weather. Dog in clothes is still something unexpected for some people but essential for small, short-hair breeds like Italian Greyhounds or Whippets.

If you own a doggo, I bet you know that. But there is a question that keeps bugging me – do I overdress my iggies? Or – should I dress them warmer today? When should I start dressing them up & then it’s too warm?

How to spot this perfect balance between happy, healthy & warm dog?

Have the same dilemmas? Read on, my friend, I think I got some great answers here.

Back in springtime I have published an article on how to dress your iggy based on different weather conditions and walking types. Check it out here!

Golden rule of #harvoola: make sure the clothing is comfortable and meets the actual weather conditions. 

Harvoola Teddy Vest

If that doesn’t help you (hmm… I won’t be surprised if it doesn’t) here are 4 points to pay attention to when deciding how to dress your dog:

#1 Temperature

There is no common agreement between vets when is it cold enough to start dressing up a dog. I usually start dressing up my dogs when it drops below 15°C degrees and pay attention towards the weather conditions as well (point #2). However, the perceived temperature is more important and that’s where it can get tricky. So if you’re heading for a longer walk yet are not sure if a onesie is enough or a coat is needed as well, put one in your backpack and you’ll be a winner in every situation!

In the same way as we should dress a dog when it’s cold, it is very important not to overdress when it’s warm enough. If your dog gets used to wearing a jumper every day even if it’s only slightly chilly outside, you might have an issue during winter time when it gets very cold.

Harvoola Italian Greyhound Clothes

#2 Weather conditions

Oh, of course it depends on the climate where you live but some things are universal – if it’s a chilly and foggy autumn morning but no rain or wind, put a jacket on. If it’s rainy, your dog’s coat will be saved if covered in a waterproof coat. If it’s chilly & windy, jumper that covers neck and ears is perfect. Have a coat that is windproof? Even better! If it’s summer and it’s warm, you surely don’t need any shirt, yet, if it’s start to rain but is still warm enough, put a thin raincoat on!

#3 Dog’s health

If your doggo is strong & healthy, he will be less sensitive to a cold weather. Don’t get tricked – it doesn’t mean you should keep him undressed when it’s freezing outside. On the other hand, if he had caught a cold, recently had been vaccinated or else, it’s better to be safe than sorry and either to dress up when it’s chilly or limit time spent outdoors.

Italian Greyhound Onesie Striped

#4 Dog’s age

Pay extra attention when you have a puppy or a senior. And that is because they are more sensitive to weather conditions than healthy adults. Dress them more often and warmer. Ah, and here’s an example – imagine you take 3 dogs out for a walk on autumn evening: a puppy, 3 years old and a 12 years old senior. It’s chilly outside but you decide not to dress them up as you’ll walk fast. In a mid-walk it gets really windy and cold. Which of the dogs are most likely to get cold first? Yes – a puppy and a senior. Similar to people, isn't it?

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I sometimes think that it would be way easier if every dog came with a manual, including when exactly to dress or undress him :) But… Let’s admit, that would take away the feeling of accomplishment, when seeing your dog happy & healthy.

Stay warm & keep your iggies warm, folks!

And remember, Cold is not a joke.


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