More and more dog owners recognize the importance of having their pups wear sweaters in the wintertime – some people even pair a dog sweater with fancy booties to keep their furry buddies comfortable and warm.
But this doesn’t mean they should be wearing a coat or sweater all the time. Small dogs are especially prone to extreme temperatures, and without any protection, they can succumb to the freezing outdoors when they decide to go out. Nonetheless, they can’t be wearing a sweater while sleeping inside the house with the heater turned on.
Dogs Shouldn’t Be Wearing a Sweater While Asleep
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Dogs should never wear a sweater while asleep, and it applies to all breeds. It’s not that difficult to rationalize since the sole purpose of the sweater is to trap the warm temperature in the dog’s body while it spends time outside.
There’s no way to prevent a dog from going outside, mostly when he is used to peeing and pooping on his designated spot. You also might bring your pup out for a walk. During the winter season, the temperature outside could fall below zero, and the coat and skin aren’t enough to keep the animal protected from the dangers of exposure. This is when it is a good idea to use a dog sweater.
However, the case is different when Fido is inside the house. Since it’s winter, you probably will have your heating equipment turned on most of the time. And when you do, the dog benefits from it as it no longer needs to brave the cold. With a cozy bed and thick blanket, the animal is in a safe place when he needs to sleep. Making him wear a sweater with the heater turned on can do more harm than good.
Dogs Can Overheat in a Sweater
Humans need extra warmth during the winter to keep the blood circulating. Dogs have the same need, which is why you put them in a sweater when you take your furry buddy out to a walk or when it needs to pee outside. But wearing a sweater has its limits. If you want more convincing that a sweater must be taken off when the dog’s already inside, try to remove it and feel his skin. You’ll notice that it feels hot. It means that the sweater did its job of trapping body heat to keep the dog from freezing.
Now if you let the dog get inside and let it sleep with a sweater on, imagine his body temperature once you turn on the heating system. Yes, a dog can overheat, and some breeds are more vulnerable than others. Instead of letting it wear a sweater, you choose a blanket to keep your pet warm and comfortable as he sleeps.
Dog Sweaters Can Be Strangulation Hazards
There’s nothing to worry if you choose a high-quality dog sweater. The only ones that potentially become a strangulation hazard are those made from substandard rigid materials. Like any other dog clothing, a sweater for a small breed must be made from comfortable and stretchable material. You want it to be flexible so that it won’t compress your dog’s airway.
Strangulation with a sweater is not as common as collars, but there’s no harm in taking extra caution. You’d rather spend a couple of extra dollars to buy a pricey yet premium quality dog sweater than put your furry buddy at risk by choosing an inferior product.
Allergies and Irritation
Some dogs sweat a lot, but it differs from one breed to another. The skin also produces oil. So, if you decide to have him wear sweaters for most of the day, it means that the oil and moisture can’t escape. When that happens, the dog becomes vulnerable to developing skin irritation, allergies, and rashes.
If you’re part of any dog owner group in social media, you’ll come across these cases. Prolonged wearing of thick clothing such as coats and sweaters isn’t advisable. Nonetheless, sweaters are still the most sensible clothing for protection against the winter.
Final Thought: Can My Dog Sleep In A Sweater?
Some dog owners are confident of leaving their dog in a sweater even when they’re asleep. The truth is that you can do so if you’re with your pup all the time. It’s easy to figure out if the dog is no longer comfortable in the sweater when you’re around. But if you’re away for several hours, then you can’t take the risk of leaving the dog inside the house with a sweater on, especially when it tends to sleep for most of the day. Simply put, you leave the sweaters on at your own risk.