One of life’s greatest mysteries that always makes me wonder this time of year is whether all those adorable, bizarre, crazy — insert alternate adjective here — dog sweaters and coats in the winter are necessary. Whenever I voice this question, my significant other adamantly asserts that they are not — dogs are born with their own personal parkas.
But I wasn’t always convinced. How could those tiny Chihuahuas have the proper insulation for 10-degree weather?
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So who’s right? Well, according to PetMD, it depends — on age, breed and fur thickness. Because while dogs do have their own “external laying system,” some have lighter layers of fur and “some are not genetically suited to the environments in which they find themselves transplanted.”
“What these dogs have in common is that they have a more difficult time generating and retaining enough body heat on their own,” according to veterinarian Dr. Marty Becker on Vetstreet.com. “For these dogs, a little help keeping dry and warm is always a good thing. Though protection from the elements is the biggest reason to put clothes on dogs headed outside, it doesn’t hurt to leave a sweater on these dogs inside if you’re keeping the heat down to save energy and money.”
Here are the types of dogs that should be sporting a coat this winter:
On the other hand, larger dogs with dense fur do not need outerwear, and could even overheat in a sweater or coat. For example, the Siberian Husky, Malamute and Saint Bernard will be fine without extra insulation.
So your teeny Chihuahua is shivering? Here’s what you should look for when investing in outerwear:
And now, without further ado, here are some warm, fashionable outerwear for your winter-lovin’ pups.