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My elderly dog was getting cold and shivery on her daily walk-abouts in the back yard. I looked at dog sweaters, but she's a good-sized dog and they were $30! I went to the Salvation Army store, picked up a kid's sized fleece zip-up vest. I put her front legs through the arm holes and zip it up over her back. She stays cozy and best of all, it cost me $1.25!
By Marna from Hartford, CT
I was determined to have a coat for my 18-month-old dog Honey. We walk in all weather and she does not have a whole lot of fur on her underside. I wanted something warm and waterproof. I found the perfect coat at Pet Edge. Even though it was a very good price, my husband lovingly reminded me that our budget does not have a "dog apparel" line item! So I did what any smart mom would do. I set out to make my own.
I had some fun with a picnic blanket and a "free" pattern from the Circle of Crafters website.
In all, the coat cost me about $2.50 and a few hours (spread over two days) to make. I had to buy some more Velcro, but I already had everything else. I had purchased the reflective tape in the fall to sew on all of our coats. I love reflective tape! I was very happy with the value and service that I got from Identi-Tape Inc. I purchased sew-on reflective tape from them online.
You can hardly tell that this cozy coat used to be a picnic blanket. It is quilted for warmth and has been treated with waterproofing spray for those early morning hurricane walks. Naturally, it is reversible: One side revealing a traditional tartan, the other a bold blue vinyl with an urban edge. Practicality has not been lost to fashion, as this blanket coat has a pocket on each side, appliqued with a charming heart. The design also puts safety first with a reflective strip on the back of the coat.
I looked carefully at the shapes of clothes sold at the store and decided on a shape that I liked. I measured my dog and sewed scraps of corduroy from some old pants together to make the top. I cut an old sweatshirt for the lining and I used some fabric I folded and ironed to make a piping I sewed around the edges. I used Velcro at the neck and waist to fasten. I sewed some elastic on the inside to pull over her back legs to keep the back of the coat in place. Now my dog will be toasty warm this winter!
Is your doggy cold, but you just can't justify spending $25 on a "special" sweater? Go to your local GoodWill and pick up a toddler sweatshirt cut off the arms an inch down from the shoulder seam and "viola" you have a doggy sweatshirt.
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Does anyone have a pattern for a Greyhound dog coat? It could be knit, crochet, or sewn. Greys have a different shape compared to most dogs with their deep chests and long torsos. My boy is very tall and about 80 lbs. Much thanks.
By Marlene from Billerica, MA
If you can get your dog to stand still for a moment, take his measurements and add extra inches to the pattern so it will fit his long slender body.
There used to be a great site called greyhoundmanor.com but they are gone now. Here is a link to their coat.
I just bought a dog coat pattern (10 different coats, 4 knitted and 6 crocheted), at JoAnn Fabrics. It shows how to measure the dog to get the coat to fit, and then gives a scale for the blocks for 12 sizes.
Hello all! Just wanted to put my 2cents in the pot! For bigger doggies, I have a black lab, the legs of a pair of sweatpants work great and last a long time. Cut the legs off at an angle, the elastic at the bottom goes around the neck, pull down to the legs, cut leg holes, make sure to not cut the doggie, stick legs thru, it should angle down the side of the back legs and the point is at the end of the back at the tail. I always keep extra fabric between the neck and front legs so that in case they get fiesty and stretch it. Sweatshirt arms are great for little doggies... you don't have to sew them, but you can if you know how around the leg holes and back ends
I have a large, 100 lb., Boxer that I have purchased and made shirts for. No matter which I put on him they won't stay in place, they tend to slide down his back and the neck gets stretched out. What am I doing wrong?
could you possibly put a bit of elastic near the collar?
I live near Gainesville, Florida and my family all tend to be big Gator (University of Florida) fans.
Seeing your post reminded me that I recently saw another Gator fan walking his large dog and his dog was appropriately dressed in a large Gator t-shirt.
The gentleman told me that he does not buy clothes for his dog (he said they never fit) but just saves his older t-shirts and so his dog has a "designer" wardrobe.
Not sure this would work with your dog but it seems the t-shirt material would be comfortable.
thank you, and yes, he has a lot of shirts from tshirts I have made him. The problem I have is determining what I need to adjust to keep them from creeping down his back and stretching the neck out. I put shirts on him mainly to contain most of his shedding, but haven't found a solution for this problem yet. Thanks again!
Be sure to take them back to the store and get a refund or exchange because you do not want to mess up dog circulation and it also can irritate the dog skin.
Sometimes improving the diet can help with shedding; certainly constant grooming does. A diet rich in fat will help, also fatty acids in cod-liver oil and other unrefined vegetable oils. I'd also try an egg beaten in milk twice a week, and check his current dog-food. he may be reacting to it. Raw meat should be part of his weekly diet too. Does he get enough exercise outdoors? All these measures should make for a healthy happy dog with a richly shining coat which sheds only as much as can be dealt with in normal grooming.
Dogs' needs are different from humans' needs. Perhaps the clothes are exacerbating the problem.
I'm trying to put new Velcro over the old. The adhesive doesn't stick well enough to stay. My dog has 3 coats she can't wear for this reason. Any ideas anyone?
By LIz from Greenwich, NY
I just replace with buttons or the plastic buckles used in making rope bracelets, on ribbons.
Sounds like you're trying to just stick adhesive-backed velcro over the old. You need to SEW new regular velcro on. Good luck!
Jean is spot-on - you need to SEW that velcro:) You'll need to buy an inexpensive leather or upholstery needle set - they come in sets of three to five, usually a curved needle in a couple of sizes and then two or three more 'heavy duty' needles with wicked looking points!
The sets cost less than $5USD and can be found in just about every store in the USA - grocery, drugstore, big box, sewing centre, and hardware. I've even seen them on racks at convenience stores on visits to family (I live in the UK but spent over 50 years in the US).
If you're not in the US, try your country's Amazon site, use the search term 'upholstery heavy-duty sewing needle to bring up dozens of choices.
You'll want to use a heavy duty sewing thread, too - also available in the same places as the needle set. Look for something that matches or is about the same size and thickness as the other stitching on the item you're trying to fix.
Finally - use a knot on the thread, but make sure the knot (doubled for strength) is on the outside to avoid painful rubbing on your dog's skin.
Buy snaps (they'll be right around where velcro is in the notions dept)! No sewing, you don't even have to remove the 'bad' velcro. I discovered this trick when my Jack Russell Terrier was teething and Chewed the Lapel off the one and only store bought clothing I had for him. That fix involved a bit more than snaps. He couldn't knaw through them either... that jacket's been my go-to template for almost everything my Littles have. I Just traced around it on newspaper, traced around that a second time on more newspaper to allow for seams. Rather than donating your old clothes, cut them up and make fido a new outfit. Save the zippers, buttons, cute trim, etc for that or future projects. Arms are easy if you just cut the upper off an old sock. Turn it upside down, the finished edge of the top is now the cuff. If it's too wide sew a seam to 'skinny' it up. Trim the excess AFTER making the seam. Less mess and no fighting the elastic
You will need to sew on the Velcro pieces.
& If you have old Velcro on the coat one needs to use a seam ripper & take it off. If you can't take it off or don't want to - just put new Velcro by the old and sew it on
Have any of you had luck with turning a pullover bib for a baby into a little Chihuahua coat by putting a Velcro band to go under the dog's belly? If so, can you tell me how you did it?
By Robyn Fed from Hampton
My mom used to make her toy poodles sweaters out of our old worn out sweaters. I have repeated it with my own little chihuahua, Chalupa. You get a sweater with sleeves at the wrists are a bit bigger than the neck of the doggy, then just measure back toward elbow until you have the desired length. Then cut the sleeve off the sweater.
Try up to puppy and find where you want arm holes and cut out a triangle then try it on. May have to adjust armholes etc. then trim up the tummy area if you have a boy doggy as they are about as careful as all males around the potty. You now have a warm, nearly free sweater that will wash and dry and you also still have the other sleeve to make a matching one! Really works also with sweatshirts.
I love this, I am going to make them for shelter dogs too!
I use baby clothes from Goodwill, Walmart, Family Dollar, yard sales. It's lil' $ & easy to make. I like most fancy lil dresses, shirts, skirts with elastic waists. Since my Chi's are 4 & 5 lbs I use Nb to 3 months but can use larger, it is just a little more altering then. Cut up the back where zipper, buttons, snaps or velcro is usually. About a 3-4 inch strip usually. Bring new edges together. Sew on inside back together or velcro. Cut out a little arch so dogs don't wet the hem. The armholes/sleeves move from sides for babies to down underneath for dog's paws/legs automatically.That's it. Can see some I made in pet album, profile pictures at my Face Book, open to all, Katrina Virostek.
I'm going to try making Dixie, my chi a sweater from one of my old sweater sleeves. Just stitch where you cut for leg holes and where you cut the sleeve off. She hates clothes but she's going to need something warm this winter.
How do I make a dog coat from a t-shirt?
By Sandy J
If the tee shirt fits the dog, meaning the sleeves are not too long on the front legs, and the body is short enough so the dog can pee without hitting the shirt underneath the body, then the only thing you need to do is put elastic through the bottom hem of the tee so it will stay covering the dog. If the dog wears a harness, you may want to put a buttonhole (a slit with the edges blanket stitched) to clip the leash to.
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Does anyone know how to make a coat for a small dog? What I would like to do is use a baby coat. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Torrie, how small is your dog? Have you thought of the premie baby clothes? That is what my sister-in-law uses for her two teacup poodles. She gave me a snow suit for my dog, but when I put it on Ruby she just laid down in the snow with her feet straight up in the air and wouldn't move. (11/06/2006)
Premie and newborn baby tops and sweaters worked for my dog when she was a puppy. Both my dogs I've had since I've been married were babies when I adopted them. I would get used baby clothes to keep them warm, just make sure they aren't restricting their movements, like jumping or walking as they can get hurt. Besides, they look darling and everyone smiles and says "Oh, how cute." (11/06/2006)
My friend wants to make our dogs snow and rain suits. She went to these websites which show very detailed photos and diagrams about how the coats are made, sized, and what fabrics we should be using as dogs don't sweat and they need to be able to have their skins "breathe" while wearing a coat. I think when you see these sites you"ll be able to make the coats for your dogs, too.
Their other page about arctic fleece dogsuits is here: northcoastmarines.com (01/06/2007)
I used the leg of a pair of old sweat pants to make a quick simple coat for my small dog. The ankle went over her head. I cut it the length of her body, two slits for her front paws and I was done. It took me 5 minutes total. And there was no sewing. You could use different size pants depending on the size of your dog. My dog loves hers and its been washed alot. (01/26/2007)