How to Know When to Use Dog Shoes


A dog will not say something if there’s pain or discomfort while walking, so it will become important to educate oneself about the situations dogs might encounter and whether or not shoes are appropriate for them to be wearing.

Some dogs can benefit from wearing dog shoes, especially if they have furry feet that collect ice and snow between the toes, but fit is very important.

Shoes should be comfortable, without rubbing against the dog’s paws, and of course they need to actually stay on as well. Be prepared to try out lots of shoes or booties until you find the ones that are right for your dog’s precious paws.

Should Dogs Wear Shoes?

Many dog owners will ask themselves if and when they should start putting shoes on their dog’s feet.


As far as the “if” is concerned, dog owners should ask themselves if they are willing to walk outside barefoot in the wintertime if they live in an inclement climate. That should answer the question for dog owners.

Many people use sled dogs as a defense against feeling obligated to adorn their pooch’s feet with shoes, but a person should know that sled dogs are a special breed of dog with a thick fur coating and special padding on their feet from training outside.

As far as the “when” is concerned, dog owners should again use their own comfort level to gauge the appropriateness of when their dogs should wear shoes. We have already covered wintertime dog woes, but what about summertime?

If a dog owner would be reluctant to walk in the hot sand on the beach barefoot, or across a hot pool deck with feet unprotected, they should place some shoes on their beloved dog’s paws too.

If Unsure Whether Weather Is An Issue

If unsure whether your dog needs shoes, if it might be too hot or too cold, use this simple test, stand on the surface you plan to take the dog on in your bare feet, if you can’t stand it for more than five consecutive seconds, then put shoes on the dog’s paws.

After An Injury Or Surgical Procedure

If your dog has an injury to the foot, or needs to have surgery on its feet for some reason, it will be important to cover the dog’s feet for an optimal recovery. Shoes will help keep the wound or surgical incision clean until it fully heals.

Traversing Rough Terrain

If you are planning a hike in the mountains or woods where there will be many hazards for both human and dog, such as sharp rocks, roots, burrs, dips in the soil, etc., plan to put your dog in protective shoes just like you would for your own feet. Dog paws are subject to cuts and scrapes, but also burning and frostbite too.


Dog owners may want to get their dogs accustomed to wearing shoes during normal occasions so when it’s time to protect their paws from the weather or other hazards, it will be slightly easier to cover the terrain.

Also in Blog

Dog Shoes Hike and Rocks
Does Your Dog Dance in Shoes?!

Everyone loves a good dog shoe video! Sometimes we all need a belly laugh. However, after the first few initial awkward steps and some extra treats your pup will adjust. Don't forget to hit record just in case your pup reacts like some of these dogs in dog booties!

View full article →

Protect Your Dog's Paws From the Dangers of Rock Salt
Protect Your Dog's Paws From the Dangers of Rock Salt

The first snowfall of the year can be a mixed bag of joy and pain for dog owners. On the one hand, a fluffy pile of snow could be heaps of fun for pets - jumping and diving in cool, cushiony fluff. On the other, snow generally implies ice and ice-melting chemicals, like rock salt.

View full article →

What Happens If My Dog Eats Grapes?
What Happens If My Dog Eats Grapes?

Dogs can strike quickly when a chance for a free snack arises, and it can often lead to an upset stomach and even the need for medical intervention. Most owners are aware of the troubles brought about by the consumption of chocolate, but not as many know about grape and raisin toxicity.

View full article →