What Size is Your Dog?

What Size is Your Dog? Two Dogs sitting beside each other.

Have you ever noticed that every dog wear company has their own sizing charts? There are no standards out there. So, how do you figure out what size is your dog?

When I first started my dog wear company, I spent a long time trying to figure out how to size my coats. What size did a Chihuahua wear? What about a Rottweiler? I searched all over the internet but found that every dog wear company had a different size chart. Charts tended to run anywhere from XXS to 2XL, but it turned out some companies made coats for a full range of breeds and some concentrated solely on small dogs. So, an extra-large size could fit a cocker spaniel for one company or fit a Great Dane for another! CONFUSING!

The 4-Step Dog Measuring Process

But there is a standard...

But there was one constant among almost all size charts and that is how you measure your dog. So, regardless of how the sizes work you can always figure out your dog’s size by measuring these three areas:

  • Neck
  • Chest Girth (Circumference)
  • Back Length
Measuring a Dog Chest Circumference

Concentrate on the Chest Measurement

Measure your dog's Chest Girth (Circumference). Remember to place 2 fingers under the measuring tape to make sure it has flexibility. Now look at the chart below and choose the size that is closest to your dog's chest. This will ensure you have a coat that will come down far enough on the dog's sides and provide enough coverage. Don’t worry if it isn’t bang on or the other measurements don't work. I'll show you how to customize these later on.

Dog Size Chart

My Version of the Size Chart

My first chart had 15 different sizes (yes, 15!) and they ranged from XXS (for tea cup Yorkies) all the way to 3XL (for Great Danes and Mastiffs). However, I quickly figured out that every dog was different. Every dog coat I made needed to have the back a little longer or the neck a little smaller.

So, I simplified my process. I reduced my chart to 5 sizes and now I customize the pattern to fit.

Take a look at this chart and see where your dog's chest measurement fits in. Look at the orange line in the middle and choose the size that is closest.

What About the Withers?

As you may note on the dog illustration above, I have added a fourth measurement to this which is the Neck to Withers. To learn more about the dog’s Withers check out my post Where the Heck Are the Withers? (and why should I care). I use the Withers measurement to help figure out where the dog’s front legs are to make sure the coat is comfortable to wear. I start with a standard pattern size and then customize the tummy wrap based on the Withers position. But you don’t need to worry about that right now. I’ll go into full detail on this in a later post when I delve into how you customize a pattern.

Get a Step-By-Step Guide and Workbook

Do you need help measuring your dog? Download my 4 Steps to Fit Your Dog Guide and Workbook and I’ll walk you through the step by step process to take all the measurements you need to make a simple dog coat your dog will love!

There's even a video you can watch that shows you exactly how to do it!

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My Vision for Transformation

My vision is not only to teach you the steps to making a dog coat but, more importantly, provide the opportunity for you to experience the creativity and pride that comes from making dog wear from scratch. It's not about the fabric or the needles or threads. It’s about magically transforming those components into functional dog wear.

My hope is to inspire and encourage you on your transformational journey so that you can master the art of dog wear design.

I'd love to hear what size you dog fits into or if you have any questions I can help you with. Please leave a comment below if you have any questions about deciding how to pick your dog coat pattern size.  

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