Does my dog need a winter coat?

Winters in the UK can get pretty chilly, with temperatures regularly dropping below freezing. Your pets are very important family members, so it’s understandable that owners worry whether their dogs are warm enough. But do you really need to invest in a winter coat?

The answer to that really depends on the type of dog you own and your location. The Pedigree Chum advice on dog clothing states that if you live in a very cold area, such as the Scottish highlands, your dog will need a little extra protection regardless of size or breed. In more temperate climates such as Southern England and Wales, only small and short haired animals really require a winter coat.

You often see Chihuahua puppies dressed to the nines by their devoted owners. Whilst many people assume it’s for the sake of doggie fashion, it’s often because these tiny pups require some extra insulation in the colder months. Other dogs that often spend a lot of time outside – perhaps for sports, such as Whippets and Greyhounds – can also benefit from a snugly winter jumper.

Whilst big or long haired dogs generally tolerate cooler weather very well, if your dog is poorly or elderly, he or she may start to feel the cold more. Keep watch for signs that your pet is feeling uncomfortable and consider buying a warm tweed dog coat for the later years. Young puppies are also susceptible to the cold; it’s best to keep them indoors as much as possible in particularly harsh weather. Obviously, this isn’t always possible, so investing in a puffer dog jacket is always a good idea. It’s always best to use your judgement to determine whether your pet is comfortable or not.

If you’re style conscious – and want your canine companion to follow suit – then you’ll be happy to know that doggie coats come in a range of styles and fabrics. Wool and fleece are the most common materials and are also quite easy to care for. However, a warm tweed dog coat or puffer dog jacket are by far the trendiest items out there, and won’t cost you a bomb to buy. Both items come in a range of fabulous designs and colours, so you can be sure to coordinate your pooch with whatever you might be wearing when out and about.

When fitted, your dog’s coat should cover the stomach, which is the most exposed part of their body. The jacket should fit snugly, but must be comfortable to get on and off. Initially, your pet may find it harder to move in their new clothing, so give them chance to adapt. High quality coats will generally be made from a warm, thin material, giving the dog more flexibility.

For more information on what clothing your posh pooch may need during the colder months, visit the London dog forum on dog clothing in winter. And remember, even if you’re not inclined to match your furry friend as you walk down the high street, your little pup may need just as much protection from the elements as you.

  • You may also like
  • Most popular articles

A Family for Amelie

Sam Robinson of ‘The Cross’ boutique talks about life with her gorgeous Staffie-cross rescue dog, Amelie