It has become increasingly common to see dogs of all ages and sizes wear different items of clothing, such as coats, sweaters, shoes and even costumes. This has made many concerned pet parents wonder if dogs should wear clothes, if dressing your dog up is good or bad. So today, we’re addressing this issue.
The first thing to keep in mind is that dressing up your dog is neither good nor bad. It all depends 100% on the situation, its purpose and on the dog itself. There are some occasions in which putting clothes on a dog can have some benefits. But there are also some cases in which doing so is completely unnecessary and can even be harmful for the pup.
Let’s go over the benefits dog clothes can have, and the cases in which it should be avoided.
Benefits of dogs wearing clothes
One of the most common and obvious benefits dressing up your dog can have is keeping them warm. Many dogs struggle with the cold, and even show signs of it, such as shaking and not wanting to go outside when the temperatures are low. And once they are put on a coat or blanket, the shaking disappears.
In this case, there’s absolutely no harm in dressing up your pup. It’s even good for them.
This can happen with dogs of any size, age and with long or short hair. It truly just depends on each dog and their personal feelings and preference.
As it happens with humans, the feeling of having something tight around your body can be soothing and relaxing, especially when you’re feeling anxious. Many dogs that suffer from anxiety have experienced tremendous benefits after wearing what’s known as anti-anxiety dog coats.
If this is the case, then putting clothes on your dog is an amazing idea. Nevertheless, you need to remember that if your pup suffers from anxiety, it might not be extremely easy for them to get used to the anti-anxiety coat.
This doesn’t mean that they can’t wear it, oh no. You just have to ease them into it. One of the best ways to do it is to help your dog associate the coat with a soothing and relaxing feeling they’ll like. You can add some calming treats to the mixture too, by doing so, you’ll be not only attending their anxiety, but also helping them associate the coat with a feeling they like, which would be eating their favorite treats, of course.
3. To protect themselves
This happens in very specific cases, such as after an operation or injury. Putting a thin piece of clothing on your pup after they have had an operation or have been injured can occupy the same role as a cone, it can keep them from licking the wound.
When you shouldn’t dress up your dog
As many benefits as dog coats can have, they can also represent some harm if not used properly.
The absolutely most important thing you should keep in mind before deciding whether to dress up your dog or not, is figuring out if your dog feels comfortable with clothes or if they don’t. It’s not uncommon for dogs to dislike, if not hate, wearing clothes, or even harnesses or collars.
When it comes to the harness they use to go for a walk, it’s pretty much unavoidable. They need to wear it, they can’t go without a leash, and wearing a collar might not be the best option. But when it comes to clothing, they don’t actually need it.
If your dog dislikes wearing clothes, please don’t make them wear them. It makes absolutely no sense. But, “what if my dog is cold?”, you may think. Well, if that’s the case, then you can turn up the heat or try covering them up with a cozy blanket that’s not as invasive as a coat.
What you also must keep in mind is that you should never dress up your dog just for your own fun or pleasure. Seeing dogs in cute outfits or costumes might seem nice, but putting your dog through it if they are feeling uncomfortable makes absolutely no sense. No dog should go through something they dislike just because their parents want to have a cute pic for Insta.