There are many reasons you may need to put clothes on your dog: You might want to protect him from bad weather or help prevent him from licking an incision after a surgery.
While most dogs can be taught to wear clothes, not all will adjust at the same pace. Laid-back pooches may get used to wearing clothes with little persuasion, while more sensitive dogs may take a longer time to grow accustomed to their new attire. The experience should be enjoyable for your dog and should never cause him to be afraid or uncomfortable. If you sense your dog becoming stressed or afraid during training, take a break; when you return to training, start with a less stressful step, such as rewarding your pooch simply for sniffing the clothing when it’s lying on the floor.
Your dog’s well-being should always be your first concern. For some dogs, the cost of wearing a sweater or coat may be greater than the benefit, and clothes may not be the best option for that particular pet.
In any situation, a combination of patience and positive reinforcement training is the best approach to teaching a dog to wear clothes. And remember, pets should always be supervised while wearing clothing, and you should make sure there are no parts that could be chewed off and swallowed.
Make Getting Dressed Fun
Teach your dog to have a positive association with clothes before he wears them by rewarding your pet with a treat just for looking at the outfit. If he sniffs it, mark the moment with a “good” and reward. Next, reward your dog for standing in place as you gently touch his side with the clothes. Drape the clothing over his back for a couple of seconds and reward him. Finally, fasten the stomach and chest straps and reward your dog for staying calm.