As the cool weather sets in across the Northern Hemisphere, some of us can’t wait to wear our favorite, softest sweaters and jackets. However, when it comes to outerwear for dogs, these items are less of an accessory choice and more of a necessity. Dog coats come in just as many shapes and sizes as our dogs themselves, and they serve a wide variety of purposes. Depending on your dog’s need, their jacket might keep them warm in freezing temperatures or cool when it’s hot. Read on to discover 11 different types of coats for dogs.
Rain Coats For Dogs
Dogs have all kinds of coats that repel rain to varying degrees. Some dogs, especially water dogs like retrievers, have water-resistant coats, while single-coated dogs cannot repel water as easily. Dogs with coats that don’t repel water well benefit from raincoats as they keep them much warmer and dryer. Whether your dog has water-resistant fur or not, some of our pups simply don’t like the rain. If you have trouble getting your dog to go for a walk or outside to relieve themselves when it’s raining, a raincoat might help with that.
Suppose you’re into more adventurous and longer outdoor activities with your dog. In that case, a raincoat might not only keep them more comfortable, but it may also be the difference between an enjoyable outing and a miserably wet and cold one. Raincoats for dogs have a convenience factor; they keep your dog from getting soaked, which keeps your furniture and floors from getting soaked.
Winter jackets are a broader group of coats for dogs. Each has its purpose and utility. Dogs with short hair (or no hair!) greatly benefit from a jacket in the cold winter months. Even dogs with medium-length hair may need a winter coat in snowy or cold winter conditions.
A fleece winter jacket is a thinner coat perfect for high-intensity activities, for dogs who just need a little extra warmth on top of their natural coat, or for cooler fall days. Fleeces are well-insulated and usually have a soft finish. The one downside to fleeces is that while some are water-resistant, they’re rarely waterproof. Fleece coats for dogs typically cover your dog’s back and chest area and have a buckle closure under the belly.
A puffy jacket is a more insulated option than a fleece. Some are waterproof, but others are not. Puffies filled with down are warmer and pack down smaller than synthetic fill, but when down gets wet, it can’t keep you warm and takes a long time to dry. When synthetic fill gets wet, it can still keep you warm and dries quicker. Puffies are essential for spending long hours in snowy weather, even if your dog has a double coat. If your dog’s puffy isn’t waterproof, you can pair the puffy with a rain jacket over the top. Like fleece jackets, puffies usually cover your dog’s back and chest.
A parka might resemble a puffy, but instead of only covering your dog’s back and chest, the material extends down the front legs. In addition, parkas have a hood to keep your dogs head and ears warm. It’s worth noting that many dogs do not like having a hood over their head, but some love how it keeps their ears toasty to the tips.
For those frigid days or for dogs with very little hair, you can use a snowsuit for dogs. A snowsuit can be fleece or puffy material and usually covers all four of your dog’s legs as well as their chest and back. There’s usually a zipper closure for this kind of coat.
Now that we’ve covered a few types of winter coats for dogs, it’s time to head to the opposite end of the spectrum: cooling vests. Any dog can get overheated in the summer heat, but did you know some jackets can help with that? It might sound counterintuitive, but some jackets can keep your dog cool.
Cooling vests use evaporative technology. Simply get the vest wet, then put it on your dog. The vest has a special layer of fabric that absorbs and locks in the water, so it evaporates over time. When the water evaporates, it takes some of your dog’s body heat with it. Keeping our dogs cool while we adventure in warm weather is essential to their well-being and comfort.
Sun Protection Jackets
You might not think your dog needs protection from the sun, but some dogs are sensitive to the sun’s harmful UV rays. Dogs can get skin cancer just like we can, but we can’t exactly cover them with sunscreen. Get your dog a UV-blocking suit, usually made from thin material covering their back, chest, neck, and legs.
Insect Protection Coats For Dogs
Another warm-weather threat dogs need protection from is insects. Especially for dogs with short hair, biting insects can wreak havoc on their skin, cursing everything from itchy bites to rashes. Some biting insects carry diseases they can pass on to your dog. Insect protection coats for dogs have a light mesh that can offer some protection from these pesky bugs.
Reflective jackets aren’t a type of jacket, but more of a style. Jackets with reflective material increase your dog’s visibility at night or during foul weather. Rain jackets usually have reflective material on them. Wearing a reflective jacket could save your dog’s life.
A thunder coat is a snug-fitting dog jacket that provides a sense of comfort and safety when your dog feels uneasy, such as during a thunderstorm. Other common issues a thunder jacket can ease are fear of fireworks or separation anxiety.
Fashion Coats For Dogs
All the coats we’ve discussed so have practical and particular purposes. It’s essential to note that some coats for dogs are just fun, fashionable items for us to dress our dogs with. While some people look down on those who dress their dogs in clothes, as long as our fur babies aren’t stressed or in pain, what we do with them for fun and bonding is no one else’s business. If your pooch loves to rock a sequin poncho, go for it!