By Toni Gibson-Mark, KPA-CTP
There sure is truth to the lyric “The weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful!” In the winter time, it is so tempting to stay indoors with our pets because it can be very cold outside! Although, the truth is that dogs need just as much exercise in the winter as they do in the warmer months. That means taking them outside for walks and playtime is just as important as letting them romp around in the grass on the warm spring days.
As always, safety and comfort for our pets is a top priority, even when we are exercising our dogs outside. Our Fido Fleece® coats serve that exact purpose! With 9 designs and 15 sizes to choose from, there really is a coat for every dog. The warm fleece material keeps the entire body warm, including the belly. The collar-to-tail Velcro closure makes it easy to put on and take off the coat. Even better, we carry certain sizes that are tailored to broad-chested dogs!
We also carry Fido Fleece® Booties. These boots that are designed specifically for dogs keep feet warm and protected. They stay on the dog’s feet using a hook-and-loop strap, and a draw cord with a toggle lock. They come in a variety of sizes, and in red and black. This is where practicality and fashion meet!
How do you know if your dog is a good candidate for these fleece jackets or booties? Some dogs get colder easier than others. Dogs with thick coats, such as Huskies, might be better able to handle cold temperatures than short-haired dogs, such as Chihuahuas.
A short-haired dog would be a great candidate for our Fido Fleece jackets or booties. Similarly, some dogs are better accustomed to cold temperatures. If your dog regularly goes outside to tromp in the snow, a particularly cold day might not be that bad. However, for dogs that spend most of their time indoors, the cold might be a shock to them. Consider using a jacket or booties with dogs that don’t spend much time outside.
Pay attention to your dog’s body language outside. Similar to humans, dogs shiver when they’re cold. If you see your dog shivering, take him inside and use a fleece jacket the next time you go out. If your dog is consistently lifting his paw, his feet might be cold. This might be a good indication that the booties would be a good match. Finally, your dog might whimper when he is cold. If your dog is reluctant to move around as much and is whimpering, this could be an indication that he is too cold and could benefit from a jacket and/or booties.
It’s very important to pay attention to your dog’s comfort level. As a general rule of thumb, remember this—if it’s too cold for you without a jacket, it very well might be too cold for your dog! Consider a jacket for your dog whenever you would wear a jacket.
Some dogs get accustomed to jackets and booties quickly, while others need some acclimation time. When you’re introducing a jacket or booties for the first time, do it slowly. Let your dog sniff and become comfortable with the new clothing. When you put the jackets or booties on your dog, pair it with lots of desirable things, like treats and praise. Consider letting your dog eat his dinner while wearing the jacket or booties so that he associates the clothing with food. Make sure he is completely comfortable with his new apparel before sending him off on an outdoor adventure—the only thing worse than a cold dog is a scared or uncomfortable cold dog!
With our Fido Fleece jackets and booties, your dog is sure to be prepared for the winter. It’s our goal at Petsafe to make sure that your dogs are not only safe and comfortable, but that they’ll be in great fashion too! Send us pictures of your dogs sporting our Fido Fleece jackets and booties—we’d love to see them!