Which Coat is Best for Winter Dog Walking? | Lands’ End

Which Coat Is Best for Winter Dog Walking?

You may reach a point mid-winter where all you’d like to do is sit on the couch under a cozy throw with a mug of hot chocolate in your hand. But no matter how determined you are to stay warm and comfortable inside, there’s someone who will feel differently. This “someone” is, of course, your dog.

Just how much time your four-legged companion needs to spend outside will determine your ideal outfit to stay warm. What coats will keep you and your dog warm so that your walks don’t feel like a chilly chore? When you’re both dressed right with the best winter coat for dog walking and the warmest dog coats, you and your best friend will enjoy many walks throughout the year.

Dog Coats—When Are They Necessary?

While it’s easy to understand why humans need coats for our lack of fur, it can be hard to understand why dogs need coats too. Are they just for fashion, or do they have a function? To determine if your dog needs a coat, ask yourself these questions:

  • Is your dog a Northern breed with a thick and dense coat? Dogs like huskies and Alaskan Malamutes have fur made for the coldest winters, so your dog can often do without a coat.
  • Is your dog small or shorthaired? These dogs, which include Chihuahuas, don’t have coats for harsh winters. They will need a coat to help their bodies make and retain heat during long outdoor walks.
  • Is your dog lean like a Greyhound? These dogs need help to lock in their body heat with a jacket like a short-haired or miniature pup.
  • If you have a senior dog, they can suffer from arthritis and weakened bodies. This makes it harder to generate heat and also makes their joints hurt when they are too cold. Make their walks gentle and not too long, and be sure to give them a warm dog coat.
  • Is your dog a long-haired breed but is groomed to have shorter hair? If so, they need a jacket when outdoors.

Outwear for Quick Backyard Trips

Sometimes you don’t have the time to go on a big walk, which makes quick outdoor trips the best use of everyone’s time. If it’s simply a quick skip to the backyard or the apartment courtyard, you won’t need to run the gamut in outerwear. Think of what can be pulled on the fastest and will come off just as easily once you’ve re-entered your heated comfort zone. One of your comfy hoodies is easy to throw on and warm enough to last a five-minute trek outside.

This casual outerwear is just the thing to wear over your matching flannel pajamas. Of course, you’ll still need the necessities: a scarf, some winter gloves, and a warm hat. Don’t leave your dog out of the fun, too. There are plenty of dog hoodies available in cute designs to show off your pup’s personality!

Neighborhood Walks

If you want to take a classic neighborhood stroll with a leash in hand, you’ll need outerwear made to insulate you and your dog well. This winter dog walking gear includes a warm dog walking jacket and a coat for you that can handle the extremes of mid-winter. Next, put on some snow pants and sturdy outwear like a warm down coat to lock in all the heat. You’ll also need to wear a sweater, gloves, scarf, hat, and slip-resistant snow boots.

If the temperature isn’t that cold—or if your route isn’t particularly long—you could even be okay wearing a light fleece jacket. As with all long-term outings, use your best discretion and be prepared for the forecast. However, note that even though it initially doesn’t feel that cold, being outdoors for a long time can make the environment feel colder than your first impression. Always keep a scarf or pair of gloves on standby in case you need some reinforcements.

The Deluxe Outdoor Experience

When you have a day off, and your dog is ready to have some fun at the park, you both need to prepare for a long day out in the cold. Getting plenty of fresh air can do everyone some good, but only when you feel comfortable with the right winter dog walking gear.

First, take your layering game seriously by topping a turtleneck or sweater with a winter vest. Depending on your choice of outerwear, you could work a fleece vest or even a down vest into your outfit. Next, you need gloves, a hat, and a warm scarf to keep the wind away from your neck and face in case the winds are high. Finally, you’re going to want to wear the warmest down coat you can find and a toasty pair of snow boots. Now, you’re ready to face any weather with Fido—although let’s be honest, you’ll probably be just as tired as he is by the time you get back!

If you’re willing to go the distance, both you and your dog are going to need to dress for it. These winter coats for dogs and humans are perfect for some outdoor fun!

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