Keeping your dog warm and dry this winter is important, especially if you have a small dog or a dog with little or no fur. Or if you happen to live in a colder climate, you know how harsh and cold winters can be and you want to protect your dog from becoming too cold.
Having two dogs of my own and living in a place that sees icy cold winters, I always get my dogs a coat to wear in the winter. This allows them to stay warm and dry on our walks while still allowing them to enjoy the outdoors. Finding a winter coat for your dog can be a challenge. That’s why I’ve found the best dog coats for winter to help you narrow the wide range of selections down to the very best.
What to Look for in a Dog Coat
When you are trying to find the perfect dog coat for your dog this winter, there are a few things you will need to consider. Finding the best dog jackets can be easy, once you know what you are looking for and what you will need for your dog.
Warmth in a dog’s winter coat is quite similar to winter coats made for humans. The materials that make up the inside and outside provide different levels of warmth and protection from the cold. This can be done by adding extra layers that will hold the body heat in, or by implementing puffy pockets of air- which will do the same.
When it comes to layers, a heavier fleece lining that comes with a breathable yet warm polyurethane coated outer layer or shell.
The puffier coats will provide your dog pockets of air that are designed to keep the warmth inside. There are a variety of materials that can be used with these from goose down, to man-made materials such as cotton or polyester. Coats made with the man-made materials are usually more cost effective and they are easier to care for.
When these puffy coats are stuffed with man-made materials, they should be breathable, light weight, and include a water resistant or water proof outer shell. Make sure you take a look at what the coat is made out of before you buy.
A winter coat made from durable polyester or even a breathable polyurethane will help keep your dog warm while fighting off winds, rain, and snow. When this outer protective layer is paired with a fleece or polyester lining, your dog will be warm even on the coldest of days.
While many dog coats may look cute on your dog, if your dog has limited range of motion or can’t even walk in the coat, you will just make your dog miserable and the coat will not work. Having a properly fitting winter dog coat is essential.
You should look for a winter dog coat that will be shaped closely to your dog’s body type. It might take some experimenting at first, but there are size charts and fitting guidelines available so you know how to measure your dog and where to take measurements.
When you measure your dog, make sure to do so carefully. The most important parts are the dog’s neck and girth. You want to make sure it is tight enough so that it keeps the warmth in and the cold out, but not too tight so it is uncomfortable or painful to wear.
Measuring the girth, also sometimes referred to as the circumference of the dog, is the chest area, located just behind the dog’s front legs. This specific measurement will ensure the dog’s coat fits all around while leaving you some room for growing and allowing the coat to cover the key areas of the dog’s body: chest, back, and belly. Protecting these parts of the body will ensure their organs are protected.
It is not usually necessary to protect their face and legs unless you live in extreme cold or artic environments.
Another important measurement will be the dog’s back. This measurement is taken from the back of the dog’s neck to the base of their tail.
One more factor to consider when looking for a coat would be the gender of the dog. If you have a male dog, you will need to ensure you have a coat they can wear without urinating on.
There are several different styles of dog winter coats. When you are searching for your dog’s new winter coat, make sure to ask yourself the following questions:
Are you looking for overall coverage?
Something that is easy to put on and take off?
Does your dog like a hooded coat?
What sort of winter climate do you live in?
Do you need water proofing or will water resistance suffice?
Is your dog finicky when it comes to wearing clothes? (if so ease of putting on and off is a must)
Do you own a male dog?
Will you need a hole for the leash to come through?
Is high visibility important to you?
Do you need something easy to wash and maintain?
Are you looking for something highly durable to last years or just something for one winter?
Not to mention, there are a wide variety of stylish colors and patterns for you and your dog to enjoy.
Top 5 Dog Coats
1. Zack & Zoey Polyester Nor'easter Dog Blanket Coat
This reversible winter dog coat from Zack & Zoey is a lightweight dog coat that still provides plenty of warmth to your dog. In a high visibility orange color, you can easily spot your dog out at the dog park or jumping through the snow.
Easy to put on and take off
Multiple sizes and colors available for nearly any dog breed
Does not restrict movements
Does not slip off
Easy to wipe clean
Great for use on a leash
Does not protect the neck
Flannel lining can create a static build-up
Sizes run large
Not as thick as other brands
Recommended to handwash
Not fully waterproof
2. Collections Etc Shearling Fleece Dog Winter Coat
The Collections Etc Shearling Fleece dog winter coat is a soft and luxurious choice to give your dog the added warmth they need this winter. Made with a polyester fleece lining, the comfort and warmth provided will ensure your dog is nice and cozy. With easy to use Velcro straps, you can put the winter coat on and off easily.
Fits close to your dog’s body
Better suited for puppies or small to medium sized dogs
Velcro is small and can slip easily
Sizes run big
Fabric is thinner which is not ideal for the coldest climates
Not water resistant or waterproof
3. Hiado Dog Pets Winter Coat Vest Dressing with Reflective Belt for Hiking and Hunting in Cold Weather
The Hiado Dog Pets Winter Coat Vest includes an easy to see, high visibility reflective belt to make your dog easy to spot, especially at night. While it is made for larger dogs, it can provide the full coverage warmth they need on the coldest days of the year. Made from two double layer polar fleece with down on the inside, this dog coat can help your dog withstand the coldest temperatures.
There’s even a little pocket on the back for you to put a few small things in when you are hiking or camping. Or you can store a treat or even empty waste collection bags there when you are taking your dog for a walk.
Collar flips up for added warmth when needed
Not fully waterproof, only water resistant
4. Derby Originals 600D Waterproof Dog Coat Insulated
The Derby Originals 600D Waterproof dog coat is insulated for plenty of warmth and protection from the ice, rain, snow, and wind. This dog coat comes with adjustable and secure straps, which help you customize the fit and ensure the dog coat remains in place through running, walking, and play.
Keeps your dog warm and dry
Sizes run large
May be too hot for dogs in milder winter climates
5. SELMAI Airman Fleece Winter Coat Snowsuit Hooded Jumpsuit Waterproof
The SELMAI Airman Fleece winter coat snowsuit is just that- a perfect little snowsuit for your dog. Complete with a hood and even leg coverage, your dog will be sure to withstand the icy winds and deep snow with the help of this snowsuit.
Made from waterproof materials, your dog will be warm and dry. There are even a couple of little pockets on the back to store treats or empty waste collection bags in when you are out for your walks.
Great for small to medium sized dogs
Plenty of movement with this coat despite the full coverage
Thick and soft
Made with three layers of materials for durability and warmth
Provides a close fit to keep body heat in
Easy to clean
Made for small to medium sized dogs only
Some dogs may not like the hood or the leg coverage
Sizes run small
Not as easy to put on or take off due to the leg coverage
Finding your dog one of the best dog jackets can be easy once you are familiar with what you are looking for and what your dog will need once winter arrives. In the case of the best dog coats for winter, the best of the 5 would have to be the Derby Originals 600D Winter Dog Coat.
The durability and the insulation will keep your dog warm winter after winter. Since this dog coat is fully waterproof, you can be sure that your dog will stay nice and dry through even the wildest blizzard or rain. Plus, this dog coat is great for wearing when you go hiking or camping.
Available in multiple sizes, the Derby Originals 600D Winter dog coat can be fitted to any sized dog from any breed. And the best thing about this coat, are the durable and fully adjustable straps that allow you to customize the fit for each individual dog. So whether you have a thinner built dog or a dog with a large chest, you can be rest assured the Derby Originals 600D winter dog coat will fit their needs. Not to mention, the variety of colors available will help keep your dog stylish too.
This winter, make sure you keep your dog comfy, warm, and dry with the help of any of the best dogs winter coats on this list.