A Comprehensive Guide to Measuring Your Dog for Clothes

A well-dressed dog not only looks adorable but also stays protected from the elements. However, finding the right size for your furry friend can be challenging. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the process of measuring your dog for clothes to ensure a comfortable and fashionable fit.

Why Measure Your Dog for Clothes?

Measuring your dog for clothes is essential for several reasons:

  • Comfort: A well-fitted outfit allows your dog to move freely and comfortably.
  • Safety: Ill-fitting clothes may cause injuries or accidents by restricting movement or getting caught on objects.
  • Functionality: Properly sized clothes can protect your dog from harsh weather, environmental hazards and allergens.
  • Fashion: A good fit ensures your dog looks stylish and well-groomed.

Tools You Need for Measuring

Before you begin, gather the following tools:

  • Soft measuring tape: A flexible, non-stretch tape that contours to your dog’s body for accurate measurements.
  • Notepad and pen: To record your dog’s measurements for future reference.
  • Treats: To reward and encourage your dog during the process.

A Word About Dog Clothing Sizes

Most manufacturers provide a sizing chart based on your dog’s measurements, weight or breed. I got my companion from a trusted Groodle Breeder in Australia and they provided me with detailed information about my pet (measurements, weights, etc.), which was very handy! So don’t forget to ask for those when acquiring your fur buddy.

Familiarise yourself with these charts and consult them when selecting the right size for your dog. While it’s frustrating that there’s no standardised sizing system, anyone who’s tried to measure clothing for humans knows that people’s clothes aren’t much better!

Measuring Your Dog

Follow these steps to measure your dog accurately:

Step 1: Get Your Dog Ready

Ensure your dog is calm and relaxed. Choose a quiet and well-lit area with few distractions when you’re going to measure your dog. Reward them with treats if they sit still to create a positive association with the activity.

Step 2: Measure the Neck

Wrap the measuring tape around your dog’s neck, where the collar typically rests. Allow for two fingers’ width of space for a comfortable fit. Record the measurement.

Step 3: Measure the Chest

Measure the widest part of your dog’s chest, typically right behind the front legs. This is often the measurement that will make or break the fit of your dog’s clothes – like with the neck, you’ll want the garment to be tight enough that it can’t fall off, but loose enough to be able to slip two fingers in between your dog’s skin and the fabric. Record the measurement.

Step 4: Measure the Length

Measure your dog’s length from the base of the neck between the shoulderblades (aka the withers) to the base of the tail. This measurement determines the maximum length of most garments your dog might wear.

Step 5: Measure the Waist

For garments like diapers or belly bands, measure your dog’s waist, just in front of the rear legs.

Tips for Successful Measurement

Keep your dog standing during the process to ensure accurate measurements. Measure your dog when they are relaxed and not overly excited. You may also take measurements at least twice to ensure consistency and accuracy – if you keep getting different results, average out the numbers to get a workable median value.

Troubleshooting Common Fit Issues

If your dog’s clothes don’t fit well, consider these solutions:

  • Neck too tight: Choose a larger size or opt for an adjustable collar.
  • Chest too tight: Look for clothes with extra room in the chest or opt for a larger size.
  • Length too long: Consider a shorter style or choose a size down.
  • Leg openings too small: Select clothes with adjustable leg openings or opt for a larger size.

With all these options, the chest fit is always going to be more important – you can work around floppy sleeves or even alter clothes a little bit to get some more room, but a chest that doesn’t allow your dog to breathe or move properly simply won’t work!


Measuring your dog for clothes is essential for ensuring a comfortable, safe, and fashionable fit. By following this guide, you’ll be well-equipped to measure your dog accurately and find the perfect outfit for your furry friend.

Keep your dog’s measurements on hand for future reference, and always consult sizing charts when purchasing new clothes. With the right fit, your dog will not only look great but also stay protected and comfortable in any weather.