Some people think sweaters and coats are just silly for dogs, but to those we say, think again! Many dogs actually need winter outerwear to brave the cold outdoors! With the temperatures dipping around the country - it's important to keep your pups warm and safe.

"Isn't that what fur is for?"

Well just like people, dogs are built differently! Some pups are better suited for warm weathers (think Chihuahuas) and others have lighter coats of fur.  Consider this, a dog's belly is practically furless - imagine how uncomfortable you'd be in cold weather without any layers!

Still unsure if your pup needs a coat? Most small breed (chihuahuas, yorkies, etc.) and leaner built dogs (greyhounds) will almost definitely need some kind of insulation if subject to colder temperatures. Dogs with short hair or thin coats will probably thank you for the extra warmth a sweater will bring. Also, if your dog refuses to go outside to relieve herself in inclimate weather, try a coat.

On the other side of the coin, some breeds (like Huskies and Saint Bernards) are genetically predisposed to live in colder weather, so an extra coat or sweater could be really uncomfortable and is not advised.

Picking the right sweater

Nowadays, there are a countless number of sweaters you could buy for your dog. If your pup isn't comfortable with a coat or sweater yet, we recommend ones that are sleeveless and just wrap around the neck and belly. Make sure to pick a coat that ends at the base of the tail and is easy for your pup to move around in (walk, run, play, go to the bathroom, etc.). We're particularly fond of Ruffwear's K9 Overcoat, it's lightweight, durable, and super easy to put on and take off.

Does your dog enjoy wearing sweaters? Share your photos on our Facebook page, we just might feature it in an upcoming post!

By Play Admin on Jan 24, 2013 at 3:01 pm 0 Comments

National Train Your Dog Month Training Tip #14: Old Dogs Can Learn New Tricks Too! Now that your dog has mastered all of his commands and is a responsible adult, make sure to continue with his training to stimulate his mind.

Just because your dog knows how to sit and stay, that doesn't mean that he shouldn't be reminded! If you slack off on your consistency, you can bet your dog will slack off on listening.

Socialization isn't just for puppies. Continue introducing him to new people, places and things! Many owners will thoroughly socialize a puppy, then wonder why the same dog (now years old) doesn't like new people! It's important to teach your dog to associate new people and things with nice experiences - say a tasty treat or playtime with a favorite plush dog toy. Socialization is crucial to building (and keeping) confidence in your dog.

Teach your dog a new trick! Never underestimate his abilities! As an adult, we taught our pup to "army crawl" - one of my favorites if I do say so myself. Just like any other age; consistency, patience and praise are all essential to learning a new command.

By Play Admin on Jan 22, 2013 at 5:16 pm 0 Comments

National Train Your Dog Month Training Tip #13: Never Judge a Book by Its Cover. In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, we thought this tip was only fitting.

When adopting or even interacting with a new pet, never judge a book by its cover. Unfortunately, negative stereotypes and perceptions have given many wonderful, loving dogs a bad rap. It's a sad fact but because of this, many animals including Pit Bulls and black dogs (and cats) are labeled "less-adoptable" and often have a hard time finding forever homes. If you're thinking about bringing home a new dog, educate yourself! Make sure you do your homework and read up about different breeds to ensure that  you're adopting a dog that will be good fit for your home and lifestyle.

Like Dr. King, it's our dream that one day people and animals will not be judged by the color of their skin (or nationality, race, breed, gender, etc.) but by the content of their character.

By Play Admin on Jan 21, 2013 at 3:46 pm 0 Comments