In the colder months, many dogs can struggle to stay warm when out on their daily adventures. Whether they’re short-haired and lean or small and furry, the combination of a drop in temperature and wet weather can turn walks into a woeful affair. That’s why giving your dog a dog coat can help to keep them cosy, protected and happy. But if it’s your first time purchasing one, how do you know what type of coat is best for your furry companion? Or what size will fit them best?

This guide on how to measure a dog for a coat will walk you through the steps for finding a coat that snugly fits your dog. We’ll also discuss a few popular coat types and how they can benefit your pup – and even make your life a little bit easier too!


Why does your dog need a dog coat?

Before you embark on a country walk, slipping on your favourite jacket is second nature to protect against the wind and rain – and the same applies to your dog.

Dog coats can help your pet to stay dry, so you don’t have to worry too much about towel drying them when you get home. It also provides them with an extra layer of warmth to keep them cosy on extra cold days. Browse our full range of waterproof, quilted, and fleece dog coats here.

Naturally, shorter-haired dogs have less insulation against the elements and will need a coat the most. However, smaller breeds, lean dogs, old dogs and those recovering from an injury can benefit from an added layer of warmth too.

As an owner, it’s your responsibility to make sure that your pet is sufficiently bundled up before heading out into winter weather. 


How to measure for a dog coat

Purchasing the right size of coat for your dog is essential: too big and it could slide off, but too small and it’ll be tight and uncomfortable. You will also need to consider their breed, as not all coats will be suitable for all body shapes and sizes.

To help your canine get the most out of its coat, it’s important to measure them before buying. 

You’ll need a tailor’s, or any soft, measuring tape – and a dog treat can help to keep your pet on their best behaviour.

      Step 1: Make sure that your dog is standing up for the most accurate measurement. This is where a treat can come in handy.

      Step 2: Measure the length of your dog from their neck to their tail. Place the start of your measuring tape on the back of their neck, where their collar sits, and run it down in a straight line to the base of their tail. Make a note of the reading in centimetres as most brands will use this metric.

      Step 3: The second measurement is the torso. Use your tape to measure around the circumference of their chest. Try to take the reading from the widest part of their chest, which is usually just behind their front legs. Note this measurement down too.

      Step 4: The length and chest measurements are the two most common ones that you’ll see, but some coats may provide a neck measurement too. For this, carefully measure around their neck as you would for a collar. Don’t forget to add approximately two fingers’ worth of space to give them extra room for comfort, and to make sure their coat will fit over their collar.


How to size a dog coat

Once you’ve worked out your dog’s measurements, finding the perfectly sized coat to fit them is easy. 

Most brands should have a size chart for you to review measurements against, but if not, we’ve drawn up a rough guide to dog clothing sizes based on the average size of these popular breeds.

  • XS — Back length: 25cm. Chest circumference: 35-45cm. Breeds: toy breed, Chihuahua, Pug.
  • S — Back length: 35cm. Chest circumference: 45-55cm. Breeds: Jack Russell, Terrier, Beagle.
  • M — Back length: 45cm. Chest circumference: 55-65cm. Breeds: Spaniel, French Bulldog, Corgi.
  • L — Back length: 55cm. Chest circumference: 65-75cm. Breeds: Labrador, Retriever, Poodle.
  • XL — Back length: 65cm. Chest circumference: 75-85cm. Breeds: German Shepherd, Doberman, Great Dane.

The back length will tell you whether a coat is too long or short for your pet, and you’ll want to make sure that a coat will fit snugly around their chest. 

It’s also worth allowing a few extra centimetres to give them enough space to move freely, or in case they wear a dog jumper underneath. If your dog is in between sizes, it’s best to size up so that their coat doesn’t cause them discomfort from being too tight.


How to choose the right kind of dog coat

Along with working out what size coat your dog needs, finding the right design or material is essential for keeping them happy and healthy. 

There are a range of styles to explore whether you want to give your pup a little extra waterproof protection or you want to find something that matches your own look. Consider the types of walks that you go on together and what features are important to you.


Waxed dog coats

Best for: waterproof protection
Terrier wearing a wax coat
A waxed coat has a special coating applied to it which gives it lasting protection against the rain. Ideal for dogs that like long, muddy walks, these coats can be easily wiped down to keep dirty paw prints to a minimum at home. 

The Barbour wax dog coat is inspired by the brand’s iconic wax jacket and features a characteristic corduroy collar for unmistakable country style. It also comes with an adjustable buckle strap and velcro strap for extra comfort. 


Fleece dog coats

Best for: comfort and convenience 
Fleece dog coat Fleece is a favourite amongst many outdoor adventurers thanks to its warm insulation and lightweight feel. It’s also easy to clean, making it a great choice for owners looking for a low maintenance option.

Our fleece dog coat helps to keep pets cosy and snug on walks. Its velcro fastening takes the hassle out of walk preparation, which is convenient for canines who struggle to sit still for buckles and straps. The solid colour and contrast edging gives it a smart finish.


Tweed dog coats

Best for: warmth
Tweed dog coat
Tweed is a mark of Scottish heritage and has been a popular fabric in fashion for hundreds of years. Its distinctive weave and twill fibres mean that it’s extremely warm, making it a wonderful option for our four-legged friends during harsher weather conditions.

Harris Tweed is a high-end country fashion brand recognised all over the world, and now your dog can also showcase the luxurious fit and quality that they’re known for. The outer layer has been handcrafted to a premium finish and the beautiful pattern ensures a classic style for every walk.


Quilted dog coats

Best for: all-round comfort and style
quilt dog coat

Quilted fabric is made up of multiple layers for optimal heat retention, before being stitched in a specific pattern to create a signature diamond pattern.

This quilted dog coat’s delightful diamond quilting adds a subtle but smart style to any dog, and it also has a corduroy collar that can be adjusted for comfortable wear. An underbody strap and buckle help to keep this coat in place even for the most active of dogs.


How to measure your dog for a coat

No matter how small or big your pet is, they could always benefit from some extra warmth to keep them healthy and protected on their daily walk. 

Find a piece of winter-weather attire that balances practicality and style by exploring our range of dog coats here.