Dog Life Jackets: 20 Things to Know

A dog life jacket is an excellent type of safety gear for your pup when you go swimming together. They come in a variety of designs, and there are some things you should know before purchasing one. Here are the top 20 facts you need to know about this essential piece of equipment!

Do Dogs Really Need Life Jackets?

Yes, it’s always a good idea to use a water jacket with your dog. Some breeds aren’t made to swim. They may find it difficult or grow tired quickly. You may not realize their exhaustion until they start drowning. A water jacket keeps them afloat even if they’re tired.

You may think that your dog doesn’t need a water jacket because they’re water dogs. They’re bred for the water. However, even water dogs grow tired. They may also enter a part of the water that has a rough current. A water jacket could save their life.

How Should a Life Vest Fit a Dog?

A life vest should be tight enough around the dog that it won’t just slide off them when they’re in the water. It also needs to be loose enough that it doesn’t cut off the circulation in your dog’s legs. Doing so can make it impossible for them to swim and can cause them serious injury.

The jacket needs to sit just below your dog’s neck.

A good way to ensure the vest is snug against your dog is to be able to place two fingers beneath the vest without too much problem.

Is it OK to Buy Used Life Jackets?

Yes, it’s okay to buy a used life jacket for your dog as long as it’s in good condition. You should thoroughly check the straps and pull on them to ensure they’re still in good shape. You should also check that the life vest still floats. If it was used as a chew toy, then it may not float anymore.

Finally, you should clean the vest. You can never be too sure where it’s been or how clean the dog was when using it last.

Does Walmart Carry Life Jackets for Dogs?

Yes, Walmart carries life jackets for dogs. You can find them in the pet section.

Can You Put a Human Life Jacket on a Dog?

You cannot put a human life jacket on a dog. Human life jackets are built for bi-pedal human beings. Your dog will either slip right out of it or will not be held aloft in the water in the right way. They’ll struggle to swim.

A dog life vest is built for quadrupeds. It has four holes for their legs and is designed to float in such a way that it keeps their head above the water and allows them to swim.

Do Dogs Naturally Know How To Swim?

Some dogs naturally know how to swim. Water dogs can rely on their instincts. Others may need to learn. A life vest is crucial in helping them to learn how to swim and feel safe while swimming.

Do Dogs Need Life Jackets in Pools?

Larger dogs can likely get by without using a life jacket in a pool. They should be closely supervised, however. Smaller dogs, like toy dogs, may still benefit from using a life jacket. Barrel-chested dogs who are not made to swim, like bulldogs, can also benefit from using a life jacket in the pool.

How Tight Should a Dog Life Jacket Be?

A dog life jacket should be snug against the dog. Yet you should be able to still fit two fingers beneath the vest. This is the ideal fit.

How Do I Get My Dog Used to a Life Jacket?

The good news is that your dog is already used to wearing a harness, then they’ll likely be alright wearing a life jacket, too. It may take time to get them used to it.

The important thing is to stop when they start expressing fear or nerves.

Bring the jacket home and let them sniff it. Then just ignore it. Let it become just a thing that’s always around. After a few days, you can start the process of putting it on your dog.

One way to encourage them is to use treats to steer their head through the hole of the jacket. For other jacket designs, you may want to secure it around their body first. If they’re calm, then give them a treat and let the jacket just lay against them. Take it off after a while.

Repeat the process and add more steps of putting the jacket on them. Once the jacket is fully on, let them wear it around the house. After they’re fully comfortable with it, you’re ready to take them out to the water.

Will Life Jackets Turn Dogs on Their Back?

Life jackets are not designed to flip the dog over. They just help them come to the surface. They also don’t impede their legs, so dogs can correct themselves and continue to swim normally.

How Do You Prevent a Life Jacket from Turning a Dog on Its Back?

You can prevent the life jacket from turning a dog on its back by ensuring the jacket fits them correctly. The jacket should have all of its straps connected and all of its feet should be through the proper holes–if it applies.

You also need to make sure the jacket is on correctly. The part that goes on their back needs to be on their back and not on their stomach.

Can Dog Life Jackets Fail?

Only a damaged life jacket will fail. It may also fail if you bought the wrong size for your dog. You should always test the life jacket before purchasing it or leaving your dog unsupervised in the water.

How Do You Make a Homemade Life Vest for a Dog?

Follow these steps to make a homemade lie vest for your dog.

Step 1: Cut Out Appropriate Length of Fabric

You’ll need to know the measurements of the circumference of your dog’s body. You also need to know your dog’s length. Cut a piece of fabric according to these lengths. It should be as long as your dog’s body and it should be as wide as three plastic bottles.

Step 2: Insert Bottles

Fold the fabric in half and place the bottles inside. Then cut smaller strips of fabric and place them between the bottles. Tie the two ends together. Then tie the two ends of the longer fabric to enclose the bottles.

Step 3: Wrap Around Dog

Wrap the jacket around your dog. You may need to remove the bottles on their belly to give them better mobility in the water.

Step 4: Attach to Collar

Tie the harness to the dog’s collar. This will ensure it doesn’t slide off. The jacket should be tied to the top of the collar and bottom.

Does Tractor Supply Sell Dog Life Jackets?

Yes, Tractor Supply sells dog life jackets. You’ll find them with the other life jackets.

Does Petco Sell Dog Life Jackets?

Yes, Petco sells lots of different dog life jackets.

What’s the Difference Between a Dog PFD and a Life Jacket?

A dog PFD is a personal floatation device. It’s designed to keep them above water. A life jacket is designed to rotate until the wearer’s head is above the water. Most dog life jackets are actually PFDs. They won’t correct the dog if its head ends up under the water.

Does Petsmart Sell Dog Life Jackets?

Yes, PetSmart sells dog life jackets.

How Much Does a Dog Life Jacket Cost?

Dog life jackets cost anywhere from $20 to $100 depending on the brand, style, and size.

Does Costco Have Dog Life Jackets?

Yes, Costco sells dog life jackets.

How Do You Choose the Best Life Jacket for Your Dog?

The best life jacket for your dog will be one that fits. It also needs great buoyancy. Bright colors also help. It can aid you in locating your dog in the water. Handles are also ideal. It will make lifting your dog out of the water easier.