To Coat or Not To Coat?
Not all dogs require coats. I mean I highly doubt you would ever be walking down the street and spot a fluffy Husky wearing a coat to keep them warm from the cold, it just won’t happen.
Which dogs actually require coats?
The first obvious types of dogs are the ones you see commonly wearing coats throughout autumn and winter, these would be the ‘lean-bodied breeds with short hair’. This category consists of your ‘delicate’ but bloody fast type of breed’s i.e Greyhounds, Italian Greyhounds, Whippets, Lurchers, Salukis, and Galgos.
This is mainly because they have very short fur and a lot of flesh showing when it comes to their legs and tummy’s thus making them vulnerable to the cold weather.
The second type of dogs that require coats are senior dogs. Old dogs have a weaker immune system than younger dogs and can suffer with arthritis. It’s common for older dogs, even with medium coated or thick coated fur, for their heat regulation to decline with increasing age just like humans.
Thirdly, the type of breeds that have long hair but have been clipped or shorn i.e poodles, afghan hounds, spaniels (depending on how short the hair has been clipped). This meaning that the normal natural coat that would usually protect them from decreasing temperatures is obvious not there to protect them making them acceptable to the cold grasp of winter’s winds.
OMG, yes, there is a fourth category of breeds that would require coats during winter. They are the small, toy-like or classified ‘miniature’ breeds. Now what type of category even is that?
Well, if I said French bulldog, Chihuahuas, or pug… would that help? Yes, these breeds could use a coat for winter; with their small, fragile bodies and short hair an extra layer wouldn’t do them any harm and they would probably appreciate it.
Last category of dogs that would greatly appreciate an extra layer is your ‘dogs that sit low to the ground’ i.e cute twerking corgis and fashionable dachshunds. Being so close to the ground, their little bodies are able to feel the cold from the grass or ice cold water puddles or even snow.
So no, coats on dogs aren’t just a fashionable things and are needed for specific breeds but yes, they look so damn cute in them as well.
With many dog breeds, comes many dog coats. We are talking like ’27 Dresses’ chick flick kind of overtake when it comes to dog coats.
Types of Dog Coats
- Cooling coats
- Insect-protection coats
- Reflective jackets
- Sun-protection coats
I mean with so much choice how can you possibly feel like you have the right coat for the right dogs or for the right weather condition.
My advice is don’t overthink it and don’t get your dog a full-sized wardrobe installed.
Most dogs only require one coat and that’s just a winter coat being a combination of a raincoat and windbreaker. Unless you have a greyhound like I do, which he has three coats: a raincoat, a windbreaker with inside fleece lining (which is also just a thicker raincoat), and fleece for inside for those cold chilly nights (we will get onto outdoor vs indoor coats soon).
To help when it comes to the ‘right coat’ for the ‘right weather condition’:
|Winter coats||Summer coats|
Snowsuits (depending on if you are fortunate enough for snow)
|Cooling coatsInsect-protection coats
Sun-protection coats (for those spoilt dogs that love to sunbathe)
All these coats come with the ‘reflective colour’ options which is fantastic because that is useful all year round when walking those cold winter nights that creep up at 4pm or those long summer sunsets that we all love to walk our dogs in and take advantage of when it comes to puppy posing and pictures for Instagram.
Indoor vs Outdoor
Now, this is for specific dogs during winter i.e the long-bodied short-haired dogs, the clipped dogs, and the small, toy-like, ‘miniature’ dogs. When inside, just like when humans wear dressing gowns, it might be useful to have an inside fleece for your dog to keep them nice and warm on those extra chilly nights when the heating is off and all is sleeping. It’s all well and good having blankets for the dogs but if they need to go outside for last wee’s or they just can’t cuddled into the blankets enough to be comfortably warm then having an extra indoor fleece layer can help.