Fashion Friday- Get Started with Dog Clothing

Welcome to FASHION FRIDAY!!! 
I am a poodle who likes to wear clothes. I have to have something on such as a bandanna in the summertime and in the cooler temps I love to wear my shirts and jackets. When the weather gets too cold or too hot , I wear my boots to protect my feet. I am a service dog so most of the time when I am out and about, I wear my service vest. Service dogs are not required to wear vests or ID but my vest clearly states that I am a medical alert dog and it stops retail personnel from running after us yelling "Sorry that dog isn't allowed in here!"
service poodle sitting beside a horse statue

When I am at home or in a pet friendly place I like to wear other types of clothing but have you ever noticed that there isn't many options for large dogs like me? Sure you can find an occasional shirt and plenty of bandannas but most of those cute dresses you see online are made for the extra small to medium dogs. If you are beagle size or smaller ,you get all the cute fashions and if you are a toy breed , you have the world of fashion at your paw. There are many companies that will custom make outfits for larger dogs but the price can be steep. Its like comparing Kobe beef to cold cuts. I have checked into having some dresses made and they can range anywhere from $250-$650!! Just a simple dress can cost $65-$75! Now that is fine for some people but this poodle can't afford that. So where do I find my clothing? 
Poodle laying near a pile of clothing
Nothing to wear
Sometimes I get lucky and find it at a major retail store like Petsmart. They occasionally carry shirts in my size. I wear a large to a extra large depending on the clothing. When they have my size clothing it sells out really quick. This tells me that there is girls and guys my size out there that want clothing too. 

 There are some to consider when introducing your pets to clothing.
 One thing pet parents have to remember is that not ALL pets enjoy clothing.
 It does take time to get used to wearing shirts and hats and even boots but if after a few times of allowing a pet to wear a shirt if they still act scared or uncomfortable in it, then clothing isn't for your pet.Maybe start with a bandanna to get them used to having something besides a collar on.  I have heard over and over from people that their pets would be ripping that shirt or bandanna off after a few minutes. Those are the pets that don't enjoy wearing clothing. 

If your pet doesn't mind the clothing but becomes uncomfortable a hour later take the clothing off. A few hours later or the next day put the clothing back on your pet. Its the part of getting used to the garment that is the hard part. Make sure to praise your pet for wearing the clothing. Tell them how fabulous they look. 

Consider safety. Tight clothing or too loose clothing can cause a falling hazard. You must make sure the clothing can not choke your pet or cut off circulation. Yes this can happen. Loose fitting clothing can cause a pet to trip. You don't wear shoes that are too small or too big, do you? Of course not. You want to make sure the clothing item fits properly. A shirt should lay against the body. Sometimes a shirt will hang 1" away from the body when the dog is standing. This is okay as long as when they walk the shirt doesn't get near his legs. 
Poodle dressed in purple
The dog should be able to move freely in the clothing. When you first put a shirt on allow the dog or cat to walk around to see how it fits. Allow them to sit, lay down or even roll to make sure they can move freely. 

With me being a poodle , I can go from my sleek summer cut to fluffy winter coat. With the thickness of my hair my clothing tends to fit different. This means that my clothing can be too tight for comfort in the winter. Those shirts get put up until summer. Shirt too tight is uncomfortable and constricting. 

Dog clothing can be just like human clothing and not be a one size fits all. One company may advertise a large but in reality its just large enough to fit a Cocker Spaniel but another company's large may fit me, a standard poodle. The best way to find out what size your dog is to measure them. 

To measure your dog you will need a flexible tape measure. 

Have the dog stand up on a flat surface in a natural stance
  • Measure around the chest - start measurement about a inch behind front legs
  • Measure the neck- Make sure you leave room for your fingers looser than a collar
  • Measure the length. Start from inbetween the shoulders to the base of the tail
This will give you a  idea of what sizes to buy. 
Next time on Fashion Friday we will talk about where to buy clothing and I will share some tips and tricks on getting the right fit. 

Until then get those measuring tapes out and get those measurements. If your pet is not used to clothing try getting them to wear a bandanna. 
Always praise them for keeping the scarf on. Give a treat (chickyum is a great treat) 
Tell them how cute they look. 
The more they know you are happy with their look the more confidence that will give them. 

Happy Friday!!! 

16 comments:

  1. Mr. N being a toy breed, he does have a wide variety of choices... but it's hard sometimes finding cute clothing for boys.

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    1. I know what you mean. Scooby is a boy and its often hard to find him clothing but lately I have seen more male fashions popping up. I believe they are seeing that boy dogs do like to wear clothing too. Yesterday at Petsmart we seen some cute shirts for boys. We will be including some male dog fashion tips too in our next installment. I hope you come back to see what Scooby's advice is.
      Happy Friday!

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  2. We have a very hard time finding clothes for Bentley. Basset Hounds need clothes too! Thanks for the measuring tips. We need a Halloween costume. ☺

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    1. Long bodied dogs are very hard to find clothing for. Sometimes we can find them but they are few and far inbetween.

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  3. Wow what a lot of clothes. I envy you all that clothes. Mom told me I don't have to wear anything except my collar, because I'm a Shephard, and I have a lot of fur :-)

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    1. Fluffy dogs sometimes don't like to wear clothing because they are already too hot in their fur but a nice bow tie, flower tie or bandanna will make you look fashionable.

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  4. Carma, I had no idea there was so much involved and you opened our eyes to the 'things I never thought of' that should be common sense for dogs fitting and wearing clothes.

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    1. Thank you for stopping by. Yes with fashions for pets there really isn't a standard size just like with humans. Each brand of clothing has its own size so if one brand has a large it won't be the same large in another brand. I wonder if there was ever a standard size for each size in the years before? I know when ma was a child her mom could go get size __ for her in any brand of clothing and it would fit ma.

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  5. We (Mum included) would never have thought that dogs or cats could enjoy wearing clothing ! We thought it was rather a human fantasy (except for some breeds who need a coat when it's cold). As Dash Kitten said above, "you opened our eyes" ! We would add that you look terrific in purple ! Purrs

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    1. My kitty Molly Mew likes to wear a fashionable scarf or even her harness. It puts a nice sway to her walk. Our guinea pig wears a shirt too. I will be featuring them all in my next posts in Fashion Friday. I hope you enjoy the segments as much as I enjoy talking about it.
      Have a pawfect day!

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  6. I had no idea larger breed dog clothes were so rare. Mine don't wear clothes much, but Maya does have a really nice dress made by these two sisters who lived in our town. Their prices were reasonable and they made clothes for all sized dogs. Sadly, these ladies no longer run their pet boutique business or I'd hook you up.

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    1. I really wouldn't say they are rare they are just few companies that do make clothing for large dogs. You can usually find a shirt or two in a shirt that is large enough for a standard poodle or a German Shepherd but when it comes to cute dresses or something fancier than a t shirt , you can't find it right off the shelf. A fun experiment is next time you are at a pet store that sells clothing for pets take 2 outfits from different brands, say Martha Stewart and Zack and Zoey ,select a small or medium then put them next to each other. You will see that the shoulders and lengths are both different even though it is the same size. I would love to live near someone who made dog clothing.
      I hope you have a pawsome day.

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  7. Carma this is awesome! I'm so glad you and your Ma are doing this.

    I see extra large fashions at Petco all the time. If I see anything you might like, would you like me to pick it up and bring it to BarkWorld for you to try on?

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    1. Thank you Christie. I would have to see the clothing first before I could okay to buying it. Some extra large clothing is too large for me and sometimes its too long for me. I appreciate you offering.
      Have a pawsome day

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  8. I love dog clothes! Mom still can't get me to wear shoes though. BOL! With enough treats, I will wear a hat for photos now, but only for a few minutes to take the photo. Then I shake it off and eat the treat. BOL! I can wear a dress all day long in winter, but Mom doesn't really dress me in Summer because I am fluffy. Mom always says better a little loose than a little tight when it comes to clothes for me or herself. BOL! I am a small dog, so lots of things come in my size, but there are some brands that even I am too big for. Some brands really only make toy dog size clothes, not small dog clothes. I usually wear a large, but if a brand runs big, I wear a medium. So I know what you mean about the size larges selling out faster than the smalls.
    Hugs,
    Pepper

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    1. I know you are a fashionista like me Pepper. I think that is why we get along so well since we like the same things, do a similar job and you are the fluffiest pom I know. BOL! I am so proud of you wearing hats for even a little bit now. It is a start to wearing fashions. Next we will work on you wearing boots!!! I know you'll understand about how different all the sizes can be.

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