Now more than ever, dogs have incorporated themselves ‘pawfectly’ into our busy everyday lives so what we do, they do right alongside us. They are our ‘new kids’ or as many call them, ‘fur babies’! But with title and notion there comes equal responsibility, to take care of them, as much as we look after ourselves and our children! People often say, “Dogs have been living in nature for so many years without extra protection, so why do they need it now?” Well, the answer to that is: Dogs have never been asked to endure ongoing rigorous conditions in different geographic locations and time zones. It’s thanks to proper nutrition and great apparel that they are living longer, healthier lives!

So what does this mean exactly? There are many important points and safety items to know about and remember. Call it the ‘How-to Guide for safe and Yappy times!’ Most of us are not used to putting clothing on our animals, but allow me to explain why dressing your dog in proper apparel will ensure safe and fun times in the great outdoors. As my two favourite sayings go: ‘It’s better to be safe than sorry’ and ‘An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!’ Here are the reasons why.

Dog Shoes: Just as we need gloves and shoes to protect our hands and feet from the cold, dogs need them for the same reasons. Dogs sweat through their paws which make them susceptible to infections, cuts and burns. In hot or cold weather, if you plan on biking, skateboarding, rollerblading or jogging with your dog, invest in quality dog running shoes with shock absorption. These will protect your dog against harmful elements such as broken glass, thorns, nails, fleas, ticks, splinters, pebbles, to name a few. Your dog will thank you for it!


Proper footwear may also help prevent early signs of joint pain. As dogs age, they are likely to experience a variety of issues such as degenerative myelopathy, arthritis, and bacterial infections. These generally result in blisters, cuts, infections, cysts, deformed paws, nerve damage, tumours, cancers or corns. As the paw pads wear down, dogs also start to slip on all slick surfaces such as hardwood flooring. This is when shoes or non-slip socks must be used. Otherwise you might want to invest in wall-to-wall carpeting or rubber mats all over your home.

To save you the financial hassle, it is probably best to invest in footwear early. Life Jackets: It’s a safety measure and there are boating laws to ensure us humans wear life vests. The same measure should hold true for your furry Best Friend!

When the sun is HOT and water is glistening, who doesn’t want to jump right in? Chances are, your furry best friend will. That’s the point. We all know the dog paddle is the hardest of all strokes, so why not help your best friend out by giving him or her some extra support with a dog-sized life jacket. Even inside a pool, the dog will be able to float which could save your pool liner from pesky scratches!

Seat Belts: By law, we must wear them and in some countries, pets are obligated to wear them too. For the sake of safety, be ahead of the trend and buckle in your furry friend. We never know when we might be involved in a motor vehicle accident and, our canine passengers need to be secured every time they get into the vehicle. Like the saying goes, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

True fact: ‘The American Humane Society reports that an estimated 100,000 dogs die from riding in truck beds alone each year.