Just like humans, dogs should be careful when going outside for winter walks and playtime. The cold temperatures, snow, and ice can be uncomfortable for their sensitive paws, but salt used to de-ice sidewalks can actually be the most annoying winter obstacle for your dog. The salts can cause irritation and cracked paws, and if the salt crystals get stuck between their toes and foot pads, your dog could lick at their paws and cause further irritation. If you live in a place where salt or ice melt is routinely spread on the streets and sidewalks during the winter months, you might want to consider investing in a pair of dog boots for winter.
There are a few things to keep in mind when shopping for dog boots. You’ll want to find some that have a good textured bottom for gripping onto slippery or wet surfaces, and waterproof material is a good idea if you live in a very snowy or rainy climate. Adjustable Velcro straps are key to securing the booties on your pup for his frolics outside, though you'll want to be sure to try them out on your dog before heading outdoors. Help him get used to wearing the boots while you’re still inside, so he can get a feel for them before braving the elements. Since puppy footwear will take a little getting used to, be prepared for some hilariously awkward walking from your dog at first. Don’t worry: They’ll get the hang of it with some practice—and some praise from you, of course!
We’ve selected eight of the best dog boots for winter in various styles, designs, and price points so you and your dog can enjoy the cold months worry-free.
Easy to put on, durable on any terrain, and waterproof, these dog boots are the all-around best pick. The non-slip bottoms prevent slipping and sliding in even the most icy of conditions, and the reflective strips will keep your dog safe during nighttime walks. My family’s goldendoodle actually wears these year-round (his paws get roughed up when he runs on the hot Texas pavement), and we absolutely love how well they hold up and protect his paws.
Shop Now: QUMY Dog Boots, $29; amazon.com
If your dog wants to still look stylish while playing in the snow, they’ll love these boots lined with faux fur. You won’t have to sacrifice function for fashion: these have rugged anti-slip soles and Velcro straps. They also have an extra-wide opening at the top, which makes putting them on so much easier.
Shop Now: PIHAPPY Warm Winter Little Pet Dog Boots, $15; amazon.com
These boots are made from a neoprene fabric that conforms to your dog’s natural paw shape, which means that your dog will feel super comfortable in them and not be restricted in any way. The thin felt lining provides extra warmth, and the reflective straps will make your pup stand out at night, making these boots a winner.
Shop Now: Bark Brite All Weather Reflective Neoprene Dog Boots, $31; chewy.com
With their tiny paws, finding boots for pups like min-pins and Italian greyhounds that still fit their small feet a bit of a challenge. That’s why we like these that are specifically designed for smaller breeds. These waterproof boots have both a zipper and Velcro straps, so you can be ultra confident these won’t fall off.
Shop Now: QUMY Small Dog Boots, $20; amazon.com
If you live somewhere that gets multiple feet of snow on the regular, your dog needs these tall, water-resistant winter boots. Coming up much higher on dogs’ legs than most other boots do, these are perfect for dogs who can’t resist running through a field after a heavy snowfall. These also feature an Elasto-Fit design for better overall fit, and the neoprene boots can even be cut to better fit our friends with shorter legs.
Shop Now: GF Pet Elastofit Dog Boots, $35; chewy.com
This high-quality option has the most durable anti-slip sole we’ve ever seen on dog boots. They practically look like running shoes for humans! These would be great if your dog likes being active year-round because the boots would protect their paws against rough, rugged terrain during hikes.
Shop Now: Kurgo Blaze Cross Dog Shoes, $63; chewy.com
We like how these water-resistant dog boots come up a little higher in the front than most other options, giving them a more secure fit on your dog’s leg. One reviewer said these boots stayed tight on her cockapoo’s “tiny ankles,” and that her dog “prances like a queen with them on.” Sounds like a royally smart purchase to us!
Shop Now: Frisco Anti-Slip Water Resistant Reflective Dog Boots, $36; chewy.com
These lightweight but durable boots are great for city-dwelling dogs who have to walk on lots of salted sidewalks in the winter. Pay extra attention to your dog’s paw measurements before ordering these. Their back paws might require a smaller size than their front paws, and since these come in pairs, you can order two different-sized pairs for an overall better fit.
Shop Now: Healers Urban Walker Dog Boots, $25; target.com