By Thursday, November 14, 2019 14 No tags Permalink

I didn’t realize big dogs wear sweaters too.

That was the unsolicited comment I got from the lady who passed us in the street early Wednesday morning.

“Yes ma’am they sure do – especially when the temperature is only 31°F”, I responded.

All day I thought about that brief encounter and wondered, am I strange, or is it “odd” to see a dog Harley and Jaxson’s size wearing a sweater in the winter?

To me it just makes sense that protective clothing (such as a sweater) is appropriate when temperatures hover below 35°F. I mean, I put on a coat, hat and gloves that day, so it made sense to put a sweater on them…

Warm winter clothing for your dog is usually determined by – 

  • Their size – smaller dogs have a harder time retaining heat. They may need a sweater or a coat during the winter
  • Breed – short haired dogs (Whippetts, Chihuahua, Italian Greyhound) may need cold weather wear. Long haired dogs (Pomeranian, Chows, Husky’s  and Great Pyrenees) don’t.
  • Outside temperature – 45°F and warmer typically don’t require outdoor attire. Temperatures below 45°F are questionable depending on the length of time you intend to be outside. If you’re only going to be out there for about 10 minutes, there’s no need.


Again, most articles state anything below 45°F for some cold-averse breeds.

Small breeds, puppies, senior dogs or dogs with super thin hair should have something on once the temperatures dip to 32°F.

Dogs with thick coats who are bred for cold weather will not require a sweater.

Once it drops to below 20°F, all dog owners should at least be aware of their dog’s well-being and look for signs that your dog is too cold, even if they are a breed that can take the cold weather.

Pedigree Foundation

But listen, don’t feel like you’ve got to wait until it gets down to a certain temperature. Do what you believe is best for your dog so that he will be comfortable. #doyouboo

Truth be told, I’ve never seen either of them “cold.” To be honest they’ve never come inside after a walk and showed any signs that they were cold. 

But just like us – dogs can get cold.

If they start – 

  • shivering
  • displaying anxiousness
  • whining
  • looking for a warm place to curl up
  • holding up one paw

– it’s time to come inside.


Yes, my Boys have fluffy hair, but they are not double coated. They are just fluffy! 

Harley’s hair is very fine and thin – so I can only imagine a 31°F wind chill can’t be enjoyable. His sweater is not extremely thick and it’s not lined…

As my mom used to say – 

It’s just a little something to block the breeze when it blows.

Jaxson’s hair is curlier – but I keep it short so he wears the same sweater…

When we lived in Virginia, they even wore snow suits…

These weren’t worn to keep them warm, they were more to prevent the snow balls from forming all over their body. Those things took forever to melt from their hair. #hours

When I think about my Dood’s cold tolerance – I prefer to lean on the side of caution comfort. I would rather put a light sweater on them for a little insulation, then not.

Especially if we’re gonna catch a ride in an open golf cart with Public Safety across campus to a meeting…

So all you big dog pet parents out there – tell me – 

Do your big dogs wear sweaters too when the temperature hits 31°F?

Happiness is a day called Friday ❤️

  • Jan & Jerry Thomas
    November 14, 2019

    Yes and our Goldendoodle Winston has a sweater wardrobe and refuses to take them off before bedtime!

    • Cathy Bennett
      November 15, 2019

      Interesting enough, the pet therapy teams did a puppy pj jam for the night shift staff in the beginning of November. We were bringing them some puppy love the night the clocks turned back – anyway, it was cold from 8-midnight and I was racing all over campus from one hospital to the other so I had flannel pj’s on them, and they loved them. Thanks so much for sharing and reading – please come back again soon.

  • Madison
    November 15, 2019

    There are a lot of doodles around here, but we have never seen one with a coat or sweater. I guess if the boys need it, go for it. Mom doesn’t want dogs who need to wear coats in the cold, so we are perfect as we love cold. It makes us wild, and with all our racing around, walking, and running, we stay warm. Enjoy your sweaters.

    • Cathy Bennett
      November 15, 2019

      I thought about you when I wrote this post Madison – I was thinking “what would I do if we lived in Minn?” Tell me this, do the Doodles you see around town have a lot of hair? I’m curious….

  • Ducky's & Radar's Mom
    November 15, 2019

    Callie and Shadow really did NOT like wearing ANYTHING other than bandannas. I still have Shadow’s raincoat, but it’s a bit too big for Radar just yet. He’s taller, and lengthwise it’s the right size; but because someone shaved him down completely (rather than take him to a groomer), his own fur coat isn’t completely grown out yet. He still has some bald spots, so the straps don’t close properly.

    PS. I like the boys’ sweaters!!

    • Cathy Bennett
      November 15, 2019

      Poor Jaxson wears all of Leo’s hand me downs and there’s a 20 difference between the two. I just tie the bottom then velcro. Who shaved Radar? Do tell….

  • Tiffany Bennett-Cuartero
    November 15, 2019

    They look so cute. Stay warm my little four-legged brothers❤️

    • Cathy Bennett
      November 15, 2019

      They are Muffin! They are!

  • Lindsay
    November 15, 2019

    So flipping cute! My fave is the snow suits. Our boys have snow suits and it’s my favorite house, heading them walk around making that swishing sound.

    I feel like that question was a silly one, well of course big dogs wear coats too, why the heck wouldn’t they? That’s like a short person saying to a tall person, oh you wear shoes/coat/clothes like the rest of us? LOL!

    Love the skulls shirt. 🙂

    Love ya miss Cathy xo

    • Cathy Bennett
      November 15, 2019

      It’s their “bad to the bone” symbol Lindsay!!!! Yep, I agree with you – that’s why I stated “her unsolicited question” because I was like “really?” I miss you too girlfriend – you live too far. LOL

  • Tails Around the Ranch
    November 15, 2019

    When it comes to weather, the rule around the “Ranch” is if I’m uncomfortable, I presume my pups will be too. Jackets & protective boots for everyone and phooey on anyone who criticizes such gear.

    • Cathy Bennett
      November 15, 2019

      That’s an EXCELLENT way to phrase it – because that’s exactly how I make the determination when to put their jackets on! You go girlfriend, you’ve summed up my entire blog post LOL Have a great weekend 🙂

  • Shannon
    November 19, 2019

    Absolutely! Each of mine has a sweater or jacket. Even though we live in Florida, we still have cold snaps here. I love all the cute pics of your pups in their sweaters! We are actually going sweater shopping today!

    • Cathy Bennett
      December 2, 2019

      How was sweater shopping? I am taking them North this winter, will definitely have to get something for them before we leave.