Life Jackets–A Summer Necessity

It’s summer!! Time for swimming and splashing around in the water!! Yahoo!

While playing with your pup in and around water can be an absolute blast and a half, water activities add a level of concern, and as dog parents, we need to prepare for any possibility, just in case. While many dogs enjoy water and are often excellent swimmers, it is important to remember that even the most intrepid swimmer can get tired and need a little floatation help. So whether your pup is an Olympian swimmer, or a beginner dog-paddler, a water lover or a little water phobic, a good life jacket is a necessity in the pup parent’s arsenal of summer gear. 

Similar to harness shopping, looking for the right life jacket for your pup can be tricky. Here are some tips to help you find the best one for your pup, plus some life jackets we really dig.

Happy Splashing, y’all!

Make sure the jacket does not block freedom of movement: Just like with a harness, you don’t want the straps to be directly in the armpit. Especially since a life jacket is often more bulky than a harness, it is important to check for ample maneuverability for your pup’s arms and legs. Your pup should be able to comfortably move, sit, lie down, etc. while wearing their jacket

You’ll want to avoid having your pup feel like the snowsuit kid.

Bright Colours are best: Consider visibility when shopping for a life jacket.

Know your pup’s swim confidence level and skill and remember that even strong swimmers can get tired.

Consider the activity and location for use of the life jacket.

  •  Are you planning on just splashing in a calm creek?
  •  How deep will the water be?
  •  What is the current like?
  •  Are you boating?

Treat your pup’s life jacket needs like you would your own, of that of a young child. Were this a small child, would you put them in a life jacket in this situation? Depending on your dog’s skill, and the activity during which the jacket is needed, it’s always best to air on the side of caution.

Always use your best judgement, and follow general safety guidelines when playing in or near water.

Cas, The Corgi, digs a good swim in his life jacket. A+ for safety!

Some of Our Fave Life Jackets, and The Body Types and Activity Levels They Fit Best:

Ruffwear Float Coat

  • (Great for all body shapes and sizes, beginner to experienced
  •  Ruffwear is known for their ruff and tuff gear that caters to the active dog family, and their Float Coat is cleverly designed to comfortably fit a plethora of dog shapes and sizes. The Float Coat is great for swimmers of man confidence levels, comes in several awesome colours, is sized for the depth of your pup’s chest, and features a super adjustable and secure front strap which accommodates for different chest and shoulder widths.
  • It also features reflective strips for excellent visibility, and is stylish to-bout.
  • Bonus: It is machine washable!

Outward Hound Granby Ripstop

  • Great for all body shapes and sizes, beginner to moderate
  •  This baby comes in a multitude of sizes, and easily accommodates for chest width and depth via the stretchy and secure tummy band. It comes in high visibility colours including orange, pink, and an adorable clownfish design!
  • It has two convenient handles, reflective features, and is suitable for swim levels from beginner to moderate.
  • Does not have a ring for a leash,  but we loop the two handles with a leash, or attach a hiking carabiner.
McCree digs his Outward Hound jacket–It’s great for fetch in the water!

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