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Keep Your Dog Warm and Dry with a Raincoat

It’s already autumn, and that means that the warmer, drier months of the year are largely behind us, and we’re getting into a time with more precipitation.  As any dog owner knows, that means a time for wet dogs.  Every pet owner knows the frustration of stepping inside a warm, dry house after a walk with their dog, only to watch the dog shake out all that water and dirt all over the mudroom or entry hall.  

This is the perfect time of year to consider buying your dog a raincoat.  Raincoats for dogs are cute and functional; they provide a number of benefits to both you and your pooch.  

·    Raincoats are great for keeping your dog warm.  Going into fall, the air is getting colder, and nothing is worse than being cold and wet.  A dog rain jacket provides a basic layer of protection against the wind and cold air, and also keeps your dog dry, which keeps him even warmer.  If you have a short-furred breed, this is particularly helpful, since there is not as much natural protection.

·    Some dogs love rain, but others can’t stand it.  If your dog is in the latter category, she might appreciate a coat that can actually keep her dry.  You may have an easier time going on walks this way, since she’ll be more comfortable.

·    When your dog stays relatively dry, he won’t get your house nearly as wet when you come back in from your walk together.  The raincoat will be wet, but at least you won’t have to worry about him shaking all that water out of his fur and getting everything else in the house wet and dirty.  A dog rain jacket with a hood is particularly effective.  Just make sure the hood is not going to occlude your dog’s vision or be unsafe in any other way.

·    Another special benefit applies to dogs that have recently been injured or undergone surgery.  Wounds which are healing need to be kept dry to prevent infection from setting in.  A rain coat can help you to prevent water from seeping through your dog’s bandages and disturbing the healing area.

·    Dog rain coats are adorable.  This is the least important benefit of course, but you can expect to get a lot of compliments when you pass by others on the sidewalk with your dog all dressed up for the weather.

Dog rain parkas and other coats for dogs need to fit properly in order to be safe and comfortable, so do some measurements before you buy.  You’ll need to measure your dog’s chest, body and neck to choose the appropriate size.  Drawstrings help to provide a secure fit, and you can purchase coats which have detachable hoods if you are unsure whether you want that feature or not.

If your dog has never worn a jacket or a coat before, you will want to slowly introduce the new garment to your dog.  Not every dog will take to wearing clothing, and some will appreciate it more than others.  When you first show your dog the new coat, it will be unfamiliar, so he’ll need time to examine it and make sure it’s okay.  Reward your dog with a treat and some attention if he touches the coat or plays with it.

Once he gets used to that, you can try putting it on him for a couple of seconds.  If he is okay with that, reward him, and next, try doing it for a few seconds longer.  Work on it each day until you get him to wear it for a few minutes.  Let him wear it for a while in the house before you take him out on a walk wearing it, and remember to keep using positive reinforcement.  If he feels restricted or unhappy, take it off right away and do not pressure him to wear it.  Many dogs do appreciate rain coats and the warmth and protection they can provide during the cooler, rainier seasons of the year!


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- All prices in Canadian dollars.

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