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How to Measure a Dog for Boots

Some pet owners think that dog boots are just a cute fashion statement, but they're actually beneficial for protecting paw pads on certain terrains. Dog booties are also a great aid for pets that need help gaining traction on slippery surfaces. Before you buy dog shoes, you must know how to measure a dog for boots to get the correct size.

Dogs with Booties – Why?

A dog's paws are certainly tough, but they cannot withstand everything. While this has a lot to do with the region that you live in and the surface the dog is walking on, there are plenty of opportunities for a dog's feet and paw pads to get hurt when going outdoors.

Rough terrain, ice and snow, rocks, sticks and other debris can all cut into a dog's pads. Hot asphalt could also burn the pads, resulting in pain and costly veterinary care. Then there's toxic chemicals that we use to melt ice in winter. These and other situations can result in a number of different paw problems that could've been prevented.

Dog footwear is the first level of protection against such issues. However, getting your dog used to dog shoes may be a challenge, whether it's dog booties, socks or anything else you put on a dog's paws. The best you thing you can do is know how to measure a dog for boots so you get an accurate and comfortable fit, making it less of a nuisance.

For example, dog booties that are too loose will slip out of place or may even fall off, and will rarely stay on the dog. Dog boots that are too tight won't comfortable either. It may also reduce circulation to the paws, or cause chaffing and skin irritation.

Fortunately, there's a number of good dog booties brands around. And buying shoes that fit your dog properly will make the adjustment period much shorter. Your dog will be comfortable, which means he'll warm up to the idea of wearing boots a lot more quickly.

RELATED: How to Put Boots On a Dog (Step by Step)

How To Measure A Dog for Boots

How To Measure A Dog for BootsMeasuring a dog's paws for booties is very simple. With just two quick measurements you'll be able to find the perfect pair of kicks for your pup. Here's how to do it.

1. Measure a Dog's Paws Circumference

The first step is to measure the circumference of the dog's paw. This can be easily done with a fabric tape measure.

Start by measuring the widest part of the paw. As I demonstrate in my video above, you don't want to measure down by the toes or up by the ankle.

At the widest point of the dog's paw, wrap the fabric tape measure around to get your reading. This is the circumference of the paw, which is how wide the boots will need to be. Write this down.

2. Measure a Dog's Paws Length

You're also going to need to know the length of the boots. This will depend on your own personal preferences and what the dog boots will be used for.

For example, will your dog be wading through deep snow and you're buying winter boots? Are you buying standard summer booties? Or is the dog going to be walking through deep puddles or trudging through mud, and you'll be shopping for waterproof boots?

Some owners prefer boots that come half-way up the leg or higher (like leggings). But if you're just trying to protect the paw pads of the dog's feet from hot asphalt or ice melting chemicals, you don't need them to be that long. You can buy dog booties that come just above the ankle, like the rain boots that I have for my dog Chloe.

Taking this measurement is easy:

Measure from the tip of a dog's toes up his leg to the desired height of the boots.

While you may not be able to find boots that are exactly this height, it will give you an idea of the length that you're looking for. Having this information will make it easier to choose the proper length.

Note: Most pet owners shop for dog booties online because it's cheaper, but if you're going to a pet store, then definitely bring your dog with you. Pet stores allow you to try booties on your dog, which takes out all of this guessing and measuring game out.

3. Best Dog Boots That Stay On

Remember that because every dog is different and all paws are shaped a bit differently, it's impossible for manufacturers to make dog shoes that will meet the needs of every dog. It may take some shopping around to find a style that fits your dog well and is comfortable for him to wear during a long walk or hike.

With that being said, we've tried many dog booties that stay on, and below are the five of our favorite brands that generally do not fall off as easily from most dogs.

READ NEXT: The 50 Best Dog Shoes of All Time

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Guide on How to Measure A Dog for Booties

Samantha’s biggest passion in life is spending time with her Boxer dogs. After she rescued her first Boxer in 2004, Samantha fell in love with the breed and has continued to rescue three other Boxers since then. She enjoys hiking and swimming with her Boxers, Maddie and Chloe.