Most of us pet lovers probably already have a sweater to keep our dogs warm. A
dog raincoat can help keep him dry, healthy and happy.
What characteristics should we look for in a dog raincoat?
- Of course, it needs to be waterproof. Most are made of PVC, polyvinylchloride, which is the same material that the water pipes in your house are made from, so it is naturally waterproof.
- Comfort is important. Your dog must be able to move easily, not have his limbs restricted, yet not have excessive movement of the raincoat so as not to scare or distract your pet. Straps must have an adjustment mechanism such as Velcro, multiple snaps or sliding buckles. If buckles are present mind that they do not entangle and pull hair.
- Safety is paramount. Some dog raincoats include a hood, and the hood must not interfere with your pet’s peripheral vision. Straps used to attach the coat to the pet must not bind, pinch or affect circulation. No part of the garment should reach under your dog’s feet, causing him to stumble. No pet should ever walk in a public area without a leash, so access to the collar and/or chest harness must be provided. At the same time, access openings must be small enough to prevent water entry, such as with a flap system.
- Nighttime safety can be provided with reflective material built into the dog raincoat. If you’re taking your pet to the street for a walk in the rain on a warm summer night, both of you should be easily seen by passing automobiles.
- An optional warm dog undercoat can make your pooch’s raincoat all-weather. Not only can he wear his raincoat with the undercoat during winter, he can keep the undercoat on without the raincoat when he’s inside if his owners tend to keep the house cooler than his liking.
Following are some of the reasons a top quality dog raincoat should be part of a dog’s wardrobe:
- You have one to stay dry, he should have one, too.
- He needs protection from the rain for several reasons:
- Most dogs don’t like to get wet. And it’s not just little prissy dogs like our Pearl, either. I have many Labrador retriever patients who would gladly dive into a nearly-frozen lake to retrieve a duck, but won’t go into the back yard to use the bathroom if rain is falling. You will find that dog raincoats come in all sizes from toy to giant. A dry, happy dog is more likely to “go” in the yard, “go” more quickly and thus be less likely to “go” when he comes back inside.
- While a soft, warm summer rain might do your pet no harm, many parts of our country are cold nine months of the year. Just as becoming chilled can make you more susceptible to disease, it affects your pet the same way.
- If your dog has recently had surgery and has a bandage that needs to stay dry, a dog raincoat is the perfect way to accomplish that.
- Raincoats for dogs are very stylish. They come in multiple colors and there are many different styles from which to choose.
Now all you need to finish out his ensemble is some nice doggie rain boots!
See you tomorrow, Dr. Randolph.