- Dog’s paws are sensitive — The pads of a dog’s feet are delicate, much like the sole of a human’s foot. Stepping on scorching surfaces or sharp objects can hurt or injure your dog’s feet.
- Dog shoes provide safety and comfort — Wearing shoes on the beach, pavement, or a hike can help keep your dog’s feet safe. They’ll also provide comfort to help navigate different terrains.
- There are plenty of options — Dog shoes come in different sizes, types, and materials, so there are plenty of options for your pup. Whether you need adjustable, breathable, or boots fit for winter, there’s something for you.
What are dog shoes?
Dog shoes are protective, breathable footwear for your pup’s paws. Paw protection is especially helpful in more extreme elements like blazing sun, snow or ice, or on rough terrain. The protective sole of dog shoes will help keep sensitive paws from burns or sharp objects and increase comfort while walking — just like people’s shoes.
In this article, you’ll learn about the best dog booties, boots, and all-weather dog shoes for your pup in different sizes and colors
Benefits of dog shoes for summer
Summer adventures bring plenty of different terrains that can be hard on your dog’s paws. The benefit of dog shoes for summer is protecting your pup’s pads and between their toes, making exploring more enjoyable for all. Not to mention, they’re pretty darn cute.
Protecting paws from hot pavements
When temperatures rise, pet parents usually think about hydration and limiting time outside. Monitoring the temperature of the surface your pet walks on is often overlooked. Even mild summer temperatures in the high 70s can produce scorching surfaces, as much as 60-80 degrees hotter than the air temperature. And many U.S. states reach temperatures of 100 degrees or more, meaning asphalt can be over 160 degrees . Unlike grass, which typically matches the air temperature, concrete and asphalt absorb sun at a much higher rate. Sand gets equally as hot and can result in first or second-degree burns fairly quickly.
Because of the risk of severe burns and the discomfort that comes with them, dog shoes are a good way to protect paws from hot pavement, concrete around pools, and sandy beaches.
Preventing infections and parasites
Protecting your dog’s feet when they’re out and about can prevent health issues. While the average pet won’t need to wear shoes regularly, there are situations where your dog will be more susceptible to infections and parasites. Dogs who spend most of their time in a pasture or trek through the woods may end up with cuts or scrapes on their feet. All that wear and tear on feet and exposure to environmental allergens can create yeast infections, cysts, or painful blisters. When you know your dog’s feet are exposed to a lot of potential hazards dog shoes are a good idea.
👉 Dog parks are notorious for parasites like hookworms , and are a known source of foot parasite infestation in dogs.
Offering more traction for walks and runs
Humans that walk and run for exercise put a lot of consideration into their footwear. Often, our four-legged friends put in just as many miles but on their bare feet. Dog shoes are a great way to provide better traction and support for active dogs, particularly when weather conditions call for it. Lightweight and high-quality dog shoes for walking will provide comfort for your pooch. Getting the right footing on a hike or jog can prevent injury and even help your dog perform better.
👉Fun fact: “Mushers”, or sled dog racers, are required to have eight booties per dog on race day.
The importance of the right fit in dog shoes
Understanding dog shoe sizes
Dog shoes come in both letter and numerical sizes. For example, a dog who wears an extra small shoe also wears a 2.5 (in most cases). It’s important to note that rear paws are sometimes smaller than front paws, so measure both and plan to buy accordingly.
How to choose the right size for your dog
To find your dog’s shoe size, you’ll need a pen, a piece of paper, and an agreeable pup. Have your dog stand on the paper. Standing is essential because the paw will be naturally splayed, unlike a dog that’s lying down. Make a mark at the longest toenail and the back of the foot, as well as marking the left and right. Then, take a tape measure and record your length and width measurements.
How to train your dog to wear shoes
The key to acclimating your dog to its new footwear is patience. Make sure you have the right fit and start by putting your dog’s shoes on inside. Let your dog explore the shoes and move around a bit, then take them off. Repeat this process several times inside, moving the time in the shoes up each time. With positive reinforcement and patience, your dog will get used to wearing shoes.
Our 6 picks for summer dog shoes
The best dog shoes are the ones your pup will wear and those that fit your needs with a unique design. Still, things like ease of use, adjustable straps, and level of protection are factors to consider. Also, hot or cold climates will determine which product is the best fit. Here’s our top six picks for dog shoes to beat the summer heat.
1. Qumy Dog Shoes
Qumy dog boots boast almost 30,000 positive reviews on Amazon and are our top pick for all seasons and weather conditions.
- Materials. This popular choice has thick rubber soles, reflective trim for nighttime wear, and adjustable straps with a wide split seam opening for easy on and off with the best fit.
- Style. These are rugged boots with high-quality breathable fabric, perfect for difficult terrain like a mountainous hike, but not too bulky for daily walking or a beach day. They also come in a variety of colors, including (but not limited to) a basic black or a fun leopard print.
- Best For. Qumy dog boots are available in a full range of sizes and fit for any climate or activity, making them a great choice for any dog. These dog shoes will protect from hot summer asphalt and make weekend adventuring safer and more comfortable for your pup.
2. XSY&G Dog Shoes
XSY&G Dog Shoes are like a doggie sneaker rather than a rugged boot. These non-slip shoes are better suited for lighter use, like protecting your pup from hot pavement or sand, rather than hiking or more difficult terrain.
- Materials. The upper part of the shoe is fabric with adjustable velcro straps, while the toe is made of leather. The bottom is a printed non-slip sole.
- Style. Lightweight, hand washable, waterproof, and reflective, these dog shoes are available in four bold colors like pink and orange. Although they’re an easy pull-on style, there seems to be some discrepancy with sizing. Pets of any size would benefit from these shoes for burn protection.
- Best For. This style is best for dog owners who want an easy option to protect their dog’s feet from hot pavement on a summer walk, or enjoy a day at the beach. Better options are available for taking a more difficult romp through the woods or snow. They can be hand washed or thrown in the washer, making them a low-maintenance shoe.
3. Hcpet Dog Shoes
Hcpet dog shoes offer light paw protection and help keep your dog’s feet clean, as well as keep your pet from tracking dirt or germs inside. Their breathable design makes them the ideal summer shoe.
- Material. Light mesh fabric makes up the bulk of these porous shoes. A velcro strap around the ankle helps with size adjustment, and a rubber sole protects your dog’s feet from heat, small rocks, or sharp objects. They’re non-slip, providing enough traction for hardwood floors. These are hand-wash only.
- Style. Hcpet mesh summer shoes are a good idea for pup parents concerned with light protection and cleanliness. They’re available in nine basic colors and available for small, medium and large sized dogs.
- Best For. These shoes are geared toward pet parents who want to cut down on cleaning off their dog’s feet when they go in and out. Someone who wants their dogs to wear shoes in the house may also find these to be a good choice. They’re also paw protection for dogs recovering from any kind of foot surgery.
4. Ruffwear dog boots
Ruffwear dog boots are ideal for dogs ready to hit the trail for a hike or keep pace with their human on a run. Whether it’s a hot or cold climate, Ruffwear dog boots are a good idea for active pups.
- Material. Vibram rubber and tightly woven mesh protect paws, and hook-and-loop cinch closure makes them easy to slip into. Reflective trim makes them safe for evenings or early morning runs.
- Style. This particular brand is marked by durability and ruggedness, like a hiking boot. A full range of sizes is available, as well as three basic colors.
- Best For. These dog shoes are known to fit well and stay put with their hook and loop closure, so they’re best for someone active who wants reliable shoes for their pup to keep up. Their breathable enough for summer but can easily transfer to snow and ice if needed.
5. Muttluk Wolf Walkers
Muttluk Wolf Walkers are a popular choice for pet owners who want to ensure their dog’s shoes don’t come off. The shoes tighten with hook and loop closure at the smallest part of the leg, making a snug fit regardless of activity level.
- Material. Rather than rubber soles, this type of Muttluks is made of high-quality leather soles and nylon exterior, both of which are waterproof and easy to clean.
- Style. This type of shoe is the least aesthetic of the bunch, but that doesn’t take away from its quality and durability. The shoe has the appearance of a basic sock or shoe that provides a barefoot feel.
- Best For. Muttluks may be a good choice for beach bums this summer since the leather soles are salt resistant. Any high-energy dog will benefit from the snug fit of these shoes and flexible soles, and they’re tough enough for adventures of all kinds.
6. Walker Paws Dog Leggings
Walkee Paws dog leggings combine a dog boot with a legging for extra environmental protection and are a go-to for dog’s who just won’t keep their shoes on.
- Material. The leggings are made with stretchable fabric, while the boots are outfitted with rubber grippies. This is the only shoe with an over-the-back design to keep the footwear in place. They’re also waterproof, making them a good choice for pups who tromp through rivers and lakes in the summer.
- Style. The most eccentric of the bunch, Walkee Paws dog leggings come in patterns like confetti or skull print and are sure to be a fashion statement. The leggings cover the entirety of the leg with a fitted boot at the bottom, and over the back secure fit to keep it all in place.
- Best for. These bootie leggings do have stipulations. They aren’t suited for short-haired dogs, dogs with short legs and a long torso like a Dachshund, or dogs with muscular hind legs like a pit bull. Fluffy dogs with standard body proportions are the ideal candidate for the leggings.
Dog shoes can be a great addition to your dog’s summer adventures. No matter what type of shoe you choose, any level of protection from scorching hot pavement or sand is an improvement over bare paws.
Frequently asked questions
Are Petsmart dog shoes any good?
Yes. Petsmart carries several brands of dog shoes like Arcadia Trail and Top Paw which may be a good fit for your needs.
Are Chewy dog shoes any good?
Yes. Chewy has a wide range of dog shoes in well known brands like Muttluk, Kong, Kurgo and more.
What can I put on my dog’s feet in hot weather?
Dog shoes for summer are a great option for pet parents who want to make sure their dog’s feet are protected from scorching hot pavement or sand.
Do dogs need shoes in summer?
Yes. Concrete and asphalt can reach temperatures over 120 degrees which can burn your dog’s feet in a matter of minutes. Dog shoes protect sensitive pads from pain and injury.
Are dog shoes good for hot weather?
Yes. There are many types of dog shoes made of breathable and waterproof material that are perfect for hot weather.