You need no excuse or explanation for dressing up your dog. Nothing is better than a dress that your dog enjoys wearing and looks fabulous in.
A dog in a dress can amplify the fun of simple Halloween get-togethers, costume parties, birthdays, dates, weddings, and many such events. A dog dress should be light, airy, and comfortable enough for your dog to move around in. It should also be the right fit and size.
We've done extensive research on dog costumes that fit most sizes and breeds of dogs and shortlisted some of the best dog dresses of 2022. Take a look below:
Here’s a comprehensive guide that covers all that you need to know before purchasing the best dog dress for your pup.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Dog Dress
You’ll need to keep the following considerations in mind when getting a new dress for your dog.
You should check the manufacturer’s guide on measuring the girth, length, and neck area of your dog and follow their size chart. This is the case with all kinds of dog clothes, not just dog dresses. To be on the safe side, you may want to opt for one size larger than the measurements you note down.
Style and fit
Dog dresses can have tons of strings, laces, and ribbons to make the garment prettier. You can select a V-neck or round neck, and the number of pearls, bows, and ribbons according to the occasion. However, dog clothes might not always be comfortable to wear. Take into account how your dog would feel in a specfic peice of clothing.
You should also look at the mechanisms for taking the dress on and off. It should fit your dog like a glove, not too loose, not too tight. Look for Velcro and strap closures.
Ease of use
Be it a wedding gown or a Halloween costume, you need to make sure that the dog dress is easy to put on and take off. The length, fit, and design of dog clothes shouldn’t affect your dog’s movement. Moreover, a machine washable dress is always preferred over delicate hand wash options.
You should avoid getting nylon and purely polyester dresses for your dog. They might look appealing but are not very breathable. The fabric should be light, soft, and not prickly in any way, so as to not bother your dog.
Tips for Dressing Up Dogs
Dogs are active and excitable animals. Here are some tips and precautionary measures for a stress-free dress-up experience.
Get them used to simpler kinds of dog clothes and the idea of wearing garments.
Allow the pup to sniff and play with the dress before trying to put it on.
Practice positive reinforcement and rewards to engage them and get them interested.
Don’t overdress the dog in dog clothes with double layers.
Observe your dog’s body language once they are in the dress. If you feel they’re uncomfortable and showing signs of irritation, it might not be the right fit or fabric for them.
How to Pick the Right Wedding Dog Dress
Let’s say you are going to attend a wedding celebration with your pup. Just like their owners, dogs love to dress according to the occasion. You can pick the appropriate dress by considering factors like:
What is the color palette, dress code, or theme of the party or wedding you’re going to? Are all bridesmaids wearing pink? Will there be flowers? Is the theme floral or chic?
How much bling?
You can tone it down or up based on the formality and fanciness of the humans at the event. Is it a super formal wedding? Are there tuxes? Is everyone in flared dresses and gowns?
What’s your dog’s role?
Is your pet a bridesmaid? Find dog clothes that match with the bride’s, with a similar design, flare, flowers, and embroidery.
Safety Considerations When Getting a Dog Dress
Here are some safety instructions you should always keep in mind:
Dogs have sharp nails and teeth, and they tend to rip their pockets, buttons, and bows off. You should be careful that they’re not ingesting any of these adornments.
Always try to stay away from dog dresses with embellishments, sequin work, studs, and buttons as they can cause a choking hazard.
Avoid zippers. They can easily get entangled or stuck in your dog’s fur.
Dressing up your dog for the evening is always fun. But it’s not always an easy task, so you need to select the right size, design, and fabric type. Keep in mind the security and overall comfort of your canine friend.
If you’re interested in a DIY activity that will help your pup look lovely, check out this video from Life of Posey to learn how to make your own dog dress pattern:
This adorable pink dog dress is made from a combination of mesh and cotton fabrics. The V-neck style offers your dog the perfect ballerina outfit. This dog dress is stitched with expert craftsmanship, care, and high-quality materials to ensure it lasts many years.
There’s also a bow at the back of the dress held in place with beautiful golden pearl beads. The bottom of the dress is all mesh, making it super lightweight and airy. No need to deal with zippers or buckles – there is a front buttoned closure for your convenience.
This Fitwarm embroidered dress is made from a soft, 100% polyester material for small and medium-sized dog breeds like spaniels, Westies, Boston terriers, and pugs. This dog dress is super stretchable due to the lightweight velvet.
The velvet gives a luxurious shine to the dress while the embroidery shows expert craftsmanship. There is an elastic waistband around the chest with a bow at the back. The snug fit around the chest and the open bottom makes this one of the best dog dresses out there.
Made of 100% cotton, the CHOLOGIFT plaid dress can be rocked as birthday wear, a party dress, or a casual everyday dress. The round neck gives a comfortable fitting and shape to the whole outfit. The fabric is ideal for dogs of all kinds, even ones with skin conditions, because of its soft material and comfort fit.
This dress comes with an easy pullover design. It has additional Velcro strips at the back for stability, support, and a secure fit. It’s been made by dog costume experts, so it won’t tear off when stretched or played in. Moreover, it’s easy to wash; you can just toss it into the washer with your own clothes without a worry.
The Kirei Sui dog dress is made from a balanced combination of polyester and cotton, resulting in an elegant dog dress. It’s been designed specifically for puppies and small breeds. The dress will fit dog breeds including Bichon Frisés, Malteses, Pomeranians, Shih Tzus, fox terriers, miniature pinschers, Jack Russell terriers, and many others.
The upper part fits snugly to the body of the dog and is fully covered with small red fabric flowers. The ribbon bow around the back comes with an elastic waistband underneath, which makes sure the dress stays securely in its place even after hours of activity.
This wedding-style dress is perfect for dressing up your dog. The sequins and flowers will make your dog the star of the night. The high-quality fabric and soft inner lining ensures that your dog is comfortable. The dress is decorated around the neckline with fabric flowers.
There is an easy open-and-close Velcro closure at the back of the dress. The bottom of the dog gown dress is short and made of a durable material that allows for hassle-free bathroom breaks.
Secure Velcro closure at the back
Decorated with flowers and sequins
Easy to use and maintain
The dress is machine washable
The bodice is longer than the skirt area, might look awkward for extra small dogs
People Also Asked
Q: Can dogs wear dresses all the time?
A: They shouldn’t, as most dog dresses are somewhat fancy and will get damaged. Your dog may also only tolerate their dress for a short time.
Q: What is the best material for dog dresses?
A: Soft fleece, cotton, knits, and blends of polyester and cotton are great options.
Q: How long does it take to familiarize a dog with dresses?
A: It can take as short as 2 days or as long as 2 weeks. It depends on your dog’s temperament.
Q: How should I measure my dog to make sure their dog dress fits?
A: With a measuring tape, measure your the girth of your dog's neck and torso. Make sure you also measure your dog's length from where their collar rests to their tail base. Compare your mesasurements to that of the dog dress you have in mind.
Q: Do dogs like wearing dresses?
A: It depends on the dog! Some dogs who routinely wear clothes, especially smaller breeds, might enjoy wearing dresses more since they are more used to it. If your dog hasn't worn clothes frequently, they may need to get used to the idea. Other dogs absolutely hate wearing clothes altogether.
Amber grew up having golden retrievers and will always have a special place in her heart for the breed. Her love for all things "dog" helped her become a general manager at a small kennel in Ohio for several years. Acquainting dogs and understanding both their needs and limitations have given her deep insights into the boarding process many dogs face in their lives. From consistent details to play time to food and bed time, Amber will always remember the small influences she was able to present to every pooch she cared for.