You are ready for your outdoor water adventure with your four-legged friend.
Now, you are wondering what else you can pack to help keep your dog safe while enjoying out there.
If you haven’t got a life jacket for your pooch, then you should definitely get one just in case.
Here are the 10 best dog life jackets you can get in 2020.
1. Editor’s Choice - Outward Hound Granby Splash Dog Life Jacket
Outward Hound is one of the most reliable brands when it comes to outdoor dog gear.
This life jacket has a lot of great premium features. You notice it has a front neck float, that is to keep your dog’s head above the water. It also comes with a neoprene belly band, adjustable chest straps and belly buckles for optimal comfort and to make sure it fits well. Not to mention the top grab handles allows you to secure your dog in case of emergency.
In addition, it has reflective accents to ensure your dog is visible at all times. The Outward Hound Granby Splash Dog Life Jacket has several sizes available from XS to XL and is a fantastic option that you may want to consider.
2. The Premium Pick - Ruffwear Float Coat Dog Life Jacket
Ruffwear, the outdoor dog gear manufacturer that has been around for more than 20 years.
This is a higher end life jacket designed to let your dog swim naturally and keep them in an upright position thanks to the strategically placed closed-cell foam panels. It has durable and water-compatible webbing to keep it stable in a wet environment, and the strong and low-profile handle allows you to pull your dog out of the water with ease.
Apart from that, Ruffwear Float Coat Dog Life Jacket has a telescoping neck closure that gives you the ability to adjust it to fit different shapes, as well as the easy to clip buckles to secure it in place. It also has reflective trim for added safety and integrated light loop to attach the separately sold beacon light. Ideal for a wide variety of activities such as swimming, rafting, boating, surfing, and kayaking.
3. Best Value - Vivaglory New Sports Style Ripstop Dog Life Jacket
The company, Vivaglory was founded in 2006 with the mission to provide products that can improve pet’s lives.
What makes this life jacket stand out is that it uses up to 50% more flotation material compared to many others and its thoughtful positioned neck design. Not only it looks good and sporty but also doesn’t restrict your dog’s movement. It provides more space for your dog and helps them to maintain a natural swimming position, hence more comfortable.
Vivaglory New Sports Style Ripstop Dog Life Jacket is made of 600D oxford cloth for durability, yet the fastening system around the belly and neck to keep it secure. It is also highly visible because of its reflective trims. This dog life jacket is one of the best on the market and has 10 colors to choose from.
4. Best Overall Performance - Vivaglory Ripstop Dog Life Jacket
Another life jacket from Vivaglory made it to our recommended list.
This dog life jacket is one range below Vivaglory New Sports Style Ripstop Dog Life Jacket. It is constructed with extra padding that provides a strong buoyancy in the water, and the handle is made to be easy for you to pull. It also offers many great safety features such as D-ring, adjustable straps and quick release buckles.
Not to mention the neck and belly fastening system can keep your dog secure, yet won’t restrict their movement. Vivaglory Ripstop Dog Life Jacket comes in 10 bright colors with reflective trims to provide you with better visibility.
5. Runner-Up Overall Performance - Paws Aboard Dog Life Jacket
This dog life jacket is made by Fido Pet Products, a company that strives to provide high quality products for pets.
It uses quick-dry and breathable neoprene fabrics for construction. Unlike most dog life jackets, it has breathable mesh underbelly designed for proper draining and to prevent chafing and heat exhaustion. Additionally, it is equipped with ventilated velcro closures and adjustable straps in order to achieve a snug fit.
Not only that, its bright color and the reflective strips on both sides make it very easy for you to locate your dog, and the rescue handle on top allows you to quickly grab them in an emergency. Paws Aboard Dog Life Jacket comes in 6 sizes and has several stylish options to choose from.
6. Most Comfortable - EzyDog Doggy Flotation Device Dog Life Vest Jacket (DFD)
EzyDog manufactures a wide range of dog gear to help make your outdoor experience more enjoyable.
This is another higher end dog life jacket we recommend. As soon as you look at it, you notice how the shape is designed in a way that can fit your dog comfortably. This is because it uses advanced manufacturing techniques combined with high quality materials to achieve an ergonomic fit. It also features the adjustable neoprene straps and has up to 50% more flotation material than most life jackets.
With its ergonomic integrated handle, it offers an easy and secure way to grab your dog. And the reflective piping also makes it highly visible. EzyDog Doggy Flotation Device Dog Life Vest Jacket has been tested rigorously which makes it one of the best dog life jackets you can get today.
7. Multifunctional Life Jacket - Kurgo Surf n’ Turf Life Jacket
I’m sure you have heard of this popular brand, Kurgo. It was founded in 2003 and is a leading company in dog travel supplies.
What we like about this product is that it can either be used as a life jacket to keep your dog safe in water or as a raincoat by simply removing the flotation layer, making it great for other activities like daily walks and excursions. It comes with 2 transverse handles for easy rescue and has reflective trim so that your dog can be easily spotted in a low light environment.
The Kurgo Surf n’ Turf Life Jacket is made of rugged ripstop materials and equipped with 2 solid metal D-rings for leash attachment. It has 5 different sizes available ranging from XS to XL.
8. Best for Novice Swimmers - Outward Hound Dawson Dog Life Jacket
This is another great product from Outward Hound we recommend.
Unlike the Outward Hound Granby Splash Dog Life Jacket, this life jacket is made for novice swimmers. With the neoprene fabric used for construction, it helps to keep your dog warm while swimming in cold water and the side foam panels to provide maximum buoyancy.
Outward Hound Dawson Dog Life Jacket also has rescue handles on top for safety purposes. It comes in 5 sizes from XS to XL and may be ideal for your next water adventure.
9. Best for Budget - Queenmore Dog Life Jacket
This life jacket has a similar breathable mesh underbelly design as Paws Aboard Dog Life Jacket. Purpose of this is to allow for quicker drying and provides optimal comfort and warmth. Featuring the adjustable nylon straps, quick release buckles, and heavy duty fastening system around the neck and belly to ensure your dog is secure.
Queenmore Dog Life Jacket is made of high quality ripstop 600D oxford cloth and polyethylene foam for durability. It also has a really wide abdominal support for added comfort and to reduce the chances of injury. Despite all the impressive features, it is budget friendly and is a fantastic option you may want to look into.
10. Best Looking - Petacc Dog Life Jacket
If you have never heard of Petacc, they offer a wide variety of pet supplies and have been in the industry for more than 10 years.
How can this cute shark life jacket with the vivid eyes, teeth, fin and tail not catch your attention? It doesn’t just look good but also durable and comfortable. It is made of tear-resistant oxford nylon and breathable mesh. With the strong rescue handle on top, you can easily pull your dog out of the water if needed.
Petacc Dog Life Jacket designed to provide excellent buoyancy and security. The adjustable belt and quick release buckles makes it very easy to put on and off, yet the D-ring allows you to attach the leash to keep your dog safe. This is a great option to show off your pooch at the beach.
Should My Dog Wear a Life Jacket?
Yes and is especially important for dogs who can’t swim. It ensures they are safe while allowing them to play in water. Even if your dog can swim, they may still need to wear it. This is because it can keep them afloat when they get tired. And what if something unfortunate happens when you are out on a boat? Without a life jacket, chances your dog will swim to safety are lower.
How to Measure My Dog for a Life Jacket?
The most important measurement you will need is your dog’s chest girth which is the widest part behind the front legs. If it is in between sizes, you should pick the next size up. Some manufacturers will also require the neck circumference, length and weight. Make sure you refer to their sizing chart.
What to Look for in the Best Dog Life Jacket?
This is perhaps the most important feature you need to consider. Ideally, you should look for a dog life jacket with more buoyant material to keep your pooch afloat, especially if they are heavy. Some life vests like the Outward Hound Granby Splash Dog Life Jacket have floatation at the neck area and some have flotation on the side like the Outward Hound Dawson Dog Life Jacket.
You should also consider a brightly colored life jacket. This is to make sure your dog can be easily spotted. Vest with reflective strips is a plus as it makes it even easier for you to locate your dog especially in a low light situation.
Accidents can happen, you can’t deny that. And have you ever thought how you can pull your dog out of water without a handle? This is just as important and the best dog life jacket should have this feature. Kurgo Surf n’ Turf Life Jacket has done a great job at this as it comes with 2 transverse handles which makes it easier for you to grab your dog in case of emergency.
4. Size and Adjustability
An improperly sized life jacket may not be as effective to keep your dog safe and it can make it uncomfortable for them. Make sure you pick the right size and you should also consider a life jacket with adjustable straps to ensure a snug fit.
Tips for Using a Dog Life Jacket
- Get your dog used to the life jacket. Just like any other gear that you bought for your dog, it can get a little bit uncomfortable for them the first time when they put in on. Make sure you train your pooch to wear it a few days before you head out.
- Ensure it is secure. Always remember to adjust the life jacket to fit your dog and check if it is secure. At the end of the day, you don’t want your dog to slip out of it and put themselves in danger.
- Practice in a pool. It is better to let your dog wear it and practice to swim in a pool at the beginning as it is safer. Swimming in open water can be very dangerous if your dog doesn’t have enough strength to handle the rougher conditions and waves.
- Never leave your dog unsupervised. Keep in mind that accidents can occur especially if you are boating. So, don’t leave them unattended.