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Are you playing doggie dress up? Here are some reasons why you should stop dressing up your dog!
I have never been a fan of dressing up any animal, but sadly always see a boost of dog dress up on social media around the holidays. X-mas and Halloween being the worst of all! I understand how humans would think that their cute little fluff looks so adorable in that Santa outfit, but their dog might beg to differ!
Here is why you shouldn’t dress up your dog
- Dress up makes your dog uncomfortable. This can be seen through their body language. If your dog has flat ears, whale eyes (showing the white in the eye), clenched jaws (like the picture) or licking their lips continuously, tucked tales or hunched up bags then they are telling you they are uncomfortable. It can also be that the dog has simply frozen in their spot or the complete opposite, is struggling to get whatever they have been dressed up in off as fast as possible. Read more here about dog body language.
- Dress up makes your dog stressed. The signs are the same as before and is shown through your dog’s body language. If these signs are present your dog’s stress level is rocketing through the roof. You can read more about stress in dogs here.
- Dress up makes your dog mistrust you. Dressing up your dog can also create a mistrust between you and your dog as your dog does not understand why you would do this to them and see it as a punishment.
When should you put clothes on your dog
Dogs need clothes for very few occasions.
A coat for when it is very cold outside. This is true for short haired breeds as most long hairs can manage the cold just fine with their fur (so smart!). Of course if the place you live reach extreme minus degrees you should also give your long haired dog a coat. However, if it is that cold, you might want to reconsider if it is smart to even take your dog out in the first place.
If you have a hairless dog breed you sometimes also need to protect their skin from sunburns during the summer by using a coat.
Dogs need shoes if they have an injury on their paw. This is to avoid dirt getting into the wound or the bandage. Dog’s also need shoes if there is deep snow (sleigh dogs often wear shoes to protect their paws from the snow and cold), or the roads has been salted. Both can cause a lot of pain on your dog’s paws when they walk on it.
Dogs do not need to be dressed up as a sausage, Santa or a skeleton. They do not need to wear sunglasses, hats or any other gadget you might think is cute. You got your dog because you think it was cute as it is, and I am sure it will continue to be as cute as when you first got it, without being dressed up.
What to do instead of dressing up your dog
I understand that you want a cute dog picture for the holidays, we all do!
But why not use those smart filters you can download on your phone and take some pictures or a video with your dog with that? The filters are cute and free and you can dress up your dog in a new outfit as much as you want. Filters does not make your dog uncomfortable or stressed (unless they are scared of your phone) and your bond with them will stay intact, as you haven’t done anything to make your dog mistrust you. Finally you will save a lot of money from not buying all those costumes.
Let your dog be and use the technology!