Taking your dog for a walk is one of the best parts of the day. You both get exercise and a chance to have fun together. Worryingly, there are a lot of dogs that are overweight and depressed. As a responsible dog owner, you want to make sure your pet has the best care and life you can provide.
A great way to keep your dog healthy and happy is to use a weighted dog vest.
How can you choose the best vest for your dog?
What differences are there between weighted dog vests?
In this comprehensive guide to weighted dog vests, you can learn all you need to and get the understanding you need to choose the best vest for your dog.
What Is A Weighted Dog Vest?
A weighted dog vest can help your dog be less active, burn off extra energy, and makes exercise more intense. The results of this are that your dog will be calmer, more manageable, and fitter. If your dog is overweight, then wearing a weighted vest can help them lose extra pounds.
The Benefits Of A Weighted Dog Vest
For many people, their dog is their best friend. You want the best for them and to help them live the healthiest life possible. Getting a weighted vest can achieve those goals, here’s why –
- Helps your dog remain calm. Many dogs have endless amounts of energy, but this can lead to hyperactive disorder and loss of control. Wearing a weighted vest helps reduce that extra energy. This means your dog will be much calmer.
- Lose weight. An overweight dog is unhealthy plus it means they may find long walks challenging. If you walk your dog for at least 20 minutes a day while wearing a vest, then in no time at all they will shed those extra pounds. You can then enjoy longer walks without worrying about them.
- Cardiovascular health. Regular walks wearing a weighted vest will keep your dog in shape. They can enjoy losing weight and a boost to their cardiovascular health.
Things To Consider When Choosing A Weighted Vest
Keep in mind that all dogs are different, and you need to consider your own dog’s needs when choosing. Don’t be afraid to speak to your veterinarian for advice if you need it. When choosing a weighted vest keep these things in mind –
- The weight. When your dog is wearing the vest, it can damage their posture if it is too heavy. Ideally, you want a weight that helps your dog develop strength and stamina but doesn’t put them under strain. Consider their body weight when deciding. If you have any doubts, consult a veterinarian.
- Size. Preferably, buy a vest that can be adjusted to fit. Before purchasing a vest measure your dog’s neck, chest, and length. The goal is that your dog is comfortable enough for them to move around in.
- Padded. A padded vest will protect your dog from any potential injuries when exercising. As always make sure the dog is comfortable.
- Pocketed. Thanks to strategically placed pockets a pocketed vest helps reduce or add weight. This vest can also be amazingly comfortable for dogs to wear.
Make Or Buy Your Dog’s Weighted Vest?
The website PetLifeWorld.com suggests that you can buy a vest, or make a vest. Buying a weighted vest is easy thanks to a huge choice of retailers selling them. If you prefer, you may decide to make your own. The benefits of making your own vest include –
- Saves the hassle of shopping
- In some cases, it may be cheaper
- You can make a custom fit for your dog
- Making your own means you can pick the fabric that you feel is most suitable
These are great reasons for making your own weighted dog vest. When buying a dog vest there is a vast range of choices. Ask the following when buying a vest –
- Does it have adjustable weights and straps?
- Is there an additional resistance attachment?
- To make it more comfortable does it have a breathable mesh?
- Is it affordable?
- Is the material lightweight and durable?
- Are the straps non-slip to reduce the risk of injury?
- Is the fabric high quality?
- Will the vest help your dog get into shape?
- Is it well-ventilated?
- Is the fabric washable and reflective?
Other Things To Consider When Choosing Which Vest To Get
Further things to think about when choosing the best vest for your dog include :
- Quality. Although the price is a factor in your choice, you should prioritize quality. Always aim to buy the best you can afford. Buying a quality vest will usually last longer and provide more comfort. Your dog will thank you!
- Backpack or vest? A weighted backpack is a better choice if you spend a lot of time outdoors. The downside to a backpack is they can move around a lot. A weighted vest is brilliant for short and long walks whilst remaining in place.
- Anti-rust. Keeping the vest dry at all times is unlikely. You may have to go out in the rain, or your dog may jump in a pool! Therefore, choosing a vest made from anti-rust metal is a good idea as it will last much longer.
Getting Your Dog To Wear The Vest
OK, you have bought a vest. Now, you need your dog to be happy to wear it. To ensure your safety and the dog’s comfort here are some tips to putting the dog in the vest –
- Start easy. To start with go on short walks and make sure to praise your dog as much as possible. Doing this will build the dog’s confidence while wearing the vest. Before you know it, your dog will be racing around in the vest. To avoid injury, it also best to start with lower weight and increase it gradually.
- Balance. Your dog and the vest should always be balanced. Make sure you adjust the vest as required so it fits comfortably. When putting the vest on try to do it as gently as possible. This will help prevent injury and keep your dog calm.
Are There Any Risks Of Using A Weighted Dog Vest?
You could seriously injure your dog if you are not careful. Too much weight can permanently damage your dog due to the strain. Also, if the dog overheats, then they could become sick or permanently injured.
Try to exercise them in the mornings or evenings to avoid overheating. If they are getting too hot, then remove the vest immediately. When adding weight start low and gradually build up but make sure to monitor how heavy the vest. Reduce the weight if it becomes too much for your dog to help prevent permanent damage.
Tips When First Using A Weighted Dog Vest
When your dog starts wearing a vest there will be a period of adjustment. Keep these tips in mind to help your dog remain comfortable –
- Carrying extra weight will make your dog thirsty, make sure to have water with you
- Aim to exercise your dog at the cooler times of the day such as the morning or evening
- Don’t push your dog too hard, let them rest when needed
- Try to start with 20-minute walks
- Avoid areas that are challenging when wearing a weighted vest, such as rocky places
When buying a vest don’t rush into any decisions. Check all the options, reviews, and pick the best one for your dog.
Once you get the right weighted dog vest you can help your dog be healthier, happier, and more active.