Do dogs really need jackets?

Are dog jackets purely for show?

We explain why a jacket can be used for more than keeping your dog warm.

"Do dogs really need to wear coats? I mean after all they do have a pretty thick coat that they are born with. But do we need to put these clothes on them, are we doing it just for show and to have a laugh?

As veterinarians we recommend that a dog wears a coat. It doesn’t matter what it looks like, it doesn’t matter what fashion it follows. It can serve a few purposes.

  • If it’s really cold it can reduce the chill factor.
  • If it's raining it can stop them from getting wet and getting cold so if it's really cold outside, then a coat can actually help them to stay nice and warm. If you notice though that they are overheating because they are panting you need to take it off.
  • The other thing that the coat can do, this is a special type of coat, is it can actually relax the dog. If a dog is very anxious, they’ve done research and they came up with a jacket that is very tight not uncomfortable, it’s stretchy and you put it on the dog. They relax as soon as it goes on, a dog gets less reactive to everything, it’s amazing. So if your dog falls into that category, dressing them in a particular type of coat can serve a purpose for behaviour as well.

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