Buying a coat for your new dachshund: mistakes to avoid
We made a lot of mistakes shopping for dog coats when we first had Sunny, our standard dachshund, and ended up with a pile of coats that didn't fit him, including coats that were sold as suitable for dachshunds. Whether you want one practical coat for your dachshund, or enjoy the fashion element of dressing your dog too, there are some things we wish we had known in advance about choosing a coat.
Dachshunds are unique in so many ways, including their body shape. Their proportions are very different to most other breeds (big chest and short legs). Everyone thinks of their long backs as dachshunds´ defining feature. But it's really their short legs. And that's where the coat-buying problems come in. Buy an all-breeds coat to fit their chest and backs, and there's too much material flopping around underneath them, and dragging along the ground. Labradors - for example - don´t have this problem, their long legs give them plenty of clearance even in a coat that´s a bit too big. Dachshunds need a coat that fits well around their body, that they can't step out of, and which won't trip them up.
An all-breeds dog coat won´t fit a dachshund
Too many global brands of dog clothing market their coats as being suitable for dachshunds, and even use dachshunds as models. But look beyond the cute dachshund and you can often see in the photo that the coat is clearly too big. If the coat is not designed for dachshunds, it's not going to fit a dachshund. Luckily, there are a number of small brands, usually started by people with experience of the breed, that design and make coats that really do fit dachshunds. You'd be far better off starting with one of these brands. We'd love you to try our bespoke Barkmatic dachshund coats of course. We also really like Wondercoat from London (they will make a bespoke size as well as offering a size range), and Cloud7 in Berlin, for great quality and design.
Beware bloggers promoting dog coat brands
Some bloggers, I´m thinking of a particular US dachshund blogger, are paid to promote big brand all-breed dog coats as being suitable for dachshunds. I ordered from two of these brands in the early days of having Sunny, trying to choose the most appropriate size, but neither coat was usable on arrival. They didn't fit in any dimension, and it was an expensive mistake. Check the size chart of any coat you like, and if it doesn't fit your dachshund´s chest, back and neck measurement then it´s not going to fit at all. Two out of three usually doesn't work.
How to buy for puppies
If you have a puppy, we suggest that if you can it's better to wait a little bit until she has stopped most of her growth. By twelve months old you should find she´s stopped getting longer and has filled out to her adult size. There's no way to buy a dachshund coat that will allow for growth (like my mother did with my school uniform when I was a kid!) You just can't predict where the growth will happen. But you can always start a puppy off in a fleece until they've finished growing.
The power of the fleece
A fleece or stretchy dog coat is always useful, and can usually accommodate a bit of growth or weight loss in your dachshund. They are usually a cheaper option, so size changes and a new fleece won't break the bank, and there's a thriving second-hand market for some brands. Equafleece is hugely popular with dachshund owners, and it's a great product, although we struggled to get one onto our standard dachshund because it wasn´t stretchy enough. We make our own 4-way stretch Stretchy dachshund fleece that´s much easier to get on and off.
Here at Barkmatic we make custom-fit coats for dachshunds
Some dachshund owners are lucky, their dogs will fit standardised dachshund coat sizes, or they don´t mind if the coat is a little short. But big standard dachshunds or teeny tiny kaninchen dachshunds, for example, often find it difficult to get a well-fitting coat.
Our coats at Barkmatic are designed to fit the unique dachshund shape. We´re in our sixth winter season now, and have sold coats to dachshund owners all over the world. Every single one of our coats is made to fit your dog, using just four simple measurements that we collect from you online after your purchase. We have a commitment to using good quality, long-lasting technical fabrics that can be cleaned easily and dry fast, to fit in with an active lifestyle. Our prices are good, and we think they're very good if you factor in the fact that our coats are made-to-fit. You can order with confidence. Don't buy lots of coats that are never going to fit, just get one that fits properly from the start.
The full range of our made-to-order dachshund coats and accessories is only available at Barkmatic dachshund coats
The Barkmatic Team