As winter continues, it’s important to remember that our canine companions also need protection from harsh weather. Short-haired dogs and breeds that are susceptible to the cold may need a jacket or sweater outdoors. And no matter how hardy your dog is, his paws should be protected from snow, ice, salt, and deicers. Icy particles and snow can collect between his toes, and most road salts and deicers are toxic to dogs. Consider keeping his feet warm—and safe—with winter dog boots.
How to Choose the Right Dog Boots
• The material of the sole should be textured, with a good grip for traction.
• Choose boots made from waterproof or water-resistant material.
• The sole should be flexible so your dog can walk naturally.
• Choose a boot with adjustable Velcro straps.
• Most dogs don’t like the feel of shoes or boots. Prepare him by trying them on him in the house for short periods of time and praising him as he gets used to wearing them.
• Always check the manufacturer’s guidelines for size, and measure before you order.
The boots below include different styles and features to help you choose the right winter boots for your dog.
Best Overall Winter Dog Boots
These boots are not only easy to put on and take off, they maximize quality, safety, and fashion. With an anti-slip molded rubber bottom and water-resistant material, your dog’s feet will be warm and dry. The adjustable, reflective strips will keep your dog safe on night walks. With more than 1,000 4- and 5-star reviews, dog owners say these are the best dog boots they have purchased. Price: $30
This waterproof boot, with an anti-slip sole, comes in several colors and eight sizes. More than 2,000 dog owners gave the boots an average rating of 4 out of 5 stars. The two adjustable straps make sizing customizable and the reflective strips provide extra visibility. Price: $36
Warmest Winter Dog Boots
These comfy boots have a fleece lining, leather soles, and a fold-over sock top for extra warmth. While they aren’t the most waterproof boots, they are extra warm for dogs who won’t be doing as much walking on snow. The boots come in a pack of four and are easy to get custom-fit. Price: $43
Best Budget Dog Boots
Perfect for those who prefer disposable OR reusable rubber boots, these colorful slip-ons are easy to toss in a bag and are great for dog owners who are on-the-go. The natural rubber boots are made to stay on without velcro, straps, or zippers. Price: starting at $10
Best Fashionable Winter Dog Boots
These colorful boots have faux-fur lining and rugged anti-slip sole. The wide opening makes it easy to get them on your dog. Price: $14
While you’re shopping for this winter, don’t forget to make sure your dog has a warm coat!
Dog Boots FAQ
Do dogs really need boots?
If your dog spends a lot of time outdoors — whether in summer or winter — investing in dog boots is a good idea. Paws are sensitive to extreme heat, extreme cold, and sharp particles such as ice shards or sticks while hiking.
Do dog feet get cold in the winter?
Dogs’ paw pads have high-fat content, which freezes less easily than other tissues. However, domesticated dogs are not all able to withstand icy conditions the way other canidae are. Some breeds withstand cold even worse than others, meaning dogs paws do get cold when exposed to prolonged icy temperatures.
Can snow hurt a dog's paws?
One of the biggest threats to your dog’s paw pads is the salt used to melt ice. If your dog’s paws are exposed to the salt for a prolonged time, it could lead to chemical burns. Your dog may also try to lick their paws or boots, ingesting the road salt. That’s why it’s always a good idea to clean and remove your dog’s boots immediately after entering the house.
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