Do you dress your dog up? I spoke a couple of years back with the owner of a chain of pet stores who told me his fastest sales growth was in clothing for dogs! I imagine that this growth has only continued in recent years.
So why do it? And should we do it at all?
Well the pros, as I see it, are the bond between dog and owner. People love their pets. How better to express your love than to buy the latest outfit? If the dog tolerates you putting it on, then he must tolerate a lot of handling which is a good thing. And there is no doubt, that a colourful bandanna around a dog’s neck looks so very stylish. And you and your dog will get noticed.
Or not to dress…
Dogs are dogs. They don’t need clothing. They have fur. Clothing can mask their body language, preventing them communicating effectively with other dogs and with us. It could potentially also be very restrictive, becoming a welfare issue.
If you choose to dress up… Good dog owners will monitor their dog’s behaviour and welfare if they choose to dress them up. Signs of discomfort may be very subtle – lip licking or more extreme – panting. If this is something you want to do but don’t know how to start, start small with a bandanna around the neck (remember to keep your dog’s collar and tag on too). When your dog is with other dogs, take the clothing off. He needs to be able to communicate to be safe.
Dressing up can be fun. Let me know if you dress up your dog. Do you make your own costumes? Or are you against it?