Thursday, February 5, 2015

The Dog Clothes Dilemma

   There are two sides on dressing your dog in clothes.  You either love it or hate it.  Most people have an opinion and aren’t afraid to voice it.  I think if your dog doesn’t mind or enjoys it, more power to you.  If your dog thinks it’s stupid, you should respect that and not put them in incredibly cute pajamas. 
   I have a dog clothes dilemma.  Let me explain.
   The pet clothing industry is a booming business and it is gaining in popularity every year.  You can find incredible doggie duds from some famous designers.  I love looking at dog clothes and I really want to buy some.  Why don’t I?  If you thought the sizes were wonky for women’s fashions, you should try to follow the sizes in canine couture.
   The problem stems from the sizing standards.  In order to get an accurate fit, you need to measure your pet’s neck, chest, and back.  The neck and chest are self-explanatory.  To measure the back, you begin at the nape of the neck and end at the base of the tail. 
   It seems that every website has a different size chart.  You should always check the measurements of any clothing item that you purchase.  Don’t assume a large at one site is the same large on another site.  If possible, try the clothes on your dog.
This generic size chart is very popular in stores.
Size           Neck                 Chest                 Back
XS            5.5”                   12”                    7”
S              6.5”                   15”                    9”
M              8”                     19”                    13”
L               10”                    24”                    17”
XL             13.5                  29”                    20”
These are the suggested breeds for each size:
XS will fit Chihuahuas and Toy Poodles.  Average Chihuahua’s neck size is 8 – 14”
Small is recommended for Beagles and Cocker Spaniels.  They both share an average neck size of 12 – 18”.
Medium should be perfect for a Pug or Dalmatian.  Except most Pugs’ necks are 12-15” and a Dalmatian will nudge the tape measure to 14 – 20 inches.
Large dogs are about the size of a Boxer or German Shepherd.  There is just one problem…Boxer’s neck 16 – 22” and a German Shepherd’s is 18 – 24”.
X-L would be a Mastiff and the popular Great Dane.  These breeds are huge, but these measurements underestimate the Dane’s neck by almost 7”. 
   Bentley is a Basset Hound.  He does not fit in any of these size categories.  According to the standard measurements, his neck is 6.5” larger than a Mastiff, but they have the same chest size.  I can find him something that fits his neck, but the rest looks like a car cover!  Did I mention his short legs?  Why does my dog have to go around looking like Vinnie Barbarino with his sleeves cut off? (No offense to the Sweathogs)  It just doesn’t seem fair. 
   I don’t normally put clothes on my dog.  Well, that’s not quite true.  He gets
dressed-up for photo shoots and special occasions.  This time of the year, we participate in the Barkus and Meoux Mardi Paw parade.  We are talking a Mardi Gras for pets!  There are dogs of every description dressed in gowns, suits, tuxedos, and every imaginable costume.  You can tell which pet parents are awesome with a sewing machine and those lucky enough to be able to purchase off-the-rack.  Bentley has worn a cape each year and looks very festive.  I just wish that he had more options.  There are designer sites that will custom tailor a design.  There are even some that can make an outfit to fit Bentley perfectly.  I only need to win the lottery and set up monthly payments.  
   I recently went to my favorite pet store and found an incredible sale.  I’m talking major markdowns!  We tried on L, XL, and XXL in several styles.  I was able to find one tee shirt that he could wear.  Why can’t clothing manufacturers make a standard size?  An XL should be an XL no matter which company makes it. 
   People have tall and short stores.  Why can’t pet clothiers throw those of us with non-standard shaped dogs a bone?  Don’t make us beg. 

*Don't miss your chance to win a bottle of Rejeneril. It will make a difference in your pet.  Guaranteed.  Enter here.
**We have an official Barking from the Bayou Facebook page!  We would love to have you join us!

Thank you dropping by our Thoughtless Thursday blog hop.  We are happy to be co-hosting with our friends Ruckus the Eskie and Love is being owned by a Husky.  Enjoy these other thoughtless bloggers too.


  1. I am right there with you on the dog clothes dilemma! Zoe and Phoenix are an XLRG in the Petsmart brand clothes and they are both 30lbs! They are considered small-medium dogs and they barely fit in an XLRG! It's so dumb. We live in Oregon and it's freezing here 8 months out of the year so they have to have something warm to wear.

    I usually buy stuff that is functional that I know will keep them warm versus the cutesy stuff but they do have some cutesy things are aren't completely necessary, too! LOL

    1. I did find Bentley a great tee shirt, but it would be nice to have a size standard that is realistic.

  2. i have the same problem with bailey. an xs will usually fit her neck and length but the chest is always huge on her. also, i usually buy her clothes sleeveless because the sleeves are always huge and make it hard for her to walk! sometimes i think they don't even know what a dog looks like because the proportions are so far off!
    wags, bailey unleashed

  3. The trials and tribulations of the fashioinista. Have a tremendous Thursday.
    Best wishes Molly

  4. I've tasked Mum to make me some outfits, there's a lot of talk and not much action at the moment!
    Loves and licky kisses
    Princess Leah xxx

  5. Bentley looks totally awesome in both of these photos! As long as he doesn't mind...go for it! Providing you can find something in his size...

    I agree with you, it is very difficult to find the right size!! You cannot always go by the charts. I won a tshirt the other day for LadyBug and ordered a size 2X for her! She weighs about 18 lbs!! Guess what they sent XS!! So, I am trying to send it back...we will see how that goes! Happy Thursday!

  6. We have this same problem, but usually with reflective gear and winter coats. Veruca can be a little tricky to get stuff for. This has a little to do with her only having three legs. This makes her from stronger and bigger than her back. And if the clothes has any sort of fasteners that depend on back legs to keep them there, they don't work.

  7. I hear you, Bentley. Being short and long, I too don't fit the standard sizes. We only wear clothes for photo shoots so it isn't a big deal, and the craziest thing is I can wear my mom's stuff. Her shirts and tops fit great. I have to shorten sleeves, but otherwise, great fit.

  8. sizing is always such a problem - even for people - what is small in one brand can huge in another brand. For us with long fur clothing tends to just look silly on us as our fur sticks out all over the place. We are happy to just wear our bowties for special events.

  9. I join this club too. I looked for a sweater for Easy yesterday. There was no store who offered clothes for large breeds. After 87 hours I found one who had a sweater in XXXL - I thought bingo! sadly the sweaters were MIC and there XXXL means they are around 12 inches long... great.... But I totally love your style Bentley, the hat is GREAT!
    Easy Rider

  10. I have a rough time finding things for Jedi, a perfectly normal sized German shepherd. Even XXL can be too tight if it's a t-shirt type thing (he has a deep chest). I've talked to Spencer the Goldendoodle about this. He's always styling. His mom says that she buys kids clothes and alters them.

  11. I feel Bentley's pain. You would think dressing a small terrier would be easy except that I am a mix of two terriers, one with a deep chest and one with a longer back. So what happens...if I get something to fit my neck, it may not always fit my chest. If it doesn't fit my chest, it scrunches up towards the shoulders and it looks like I am wearing a "belly shirt". Nothing ever fits the length of my back properly. We just "make do" like you. *sigh*

  12. Aw yea! I can imagine how hard it would be to fit a Basset with some paw-some clothing! I never really thought of that!
    I dress up my huskies here and there, mostly just long enough to take a few pics and that's all.
    ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!

  13. OH BENTLEY..... we know JUST what you are talking about here... WE have the SAME body type...just smaller... and it is so difficult to find the RIGHT size fur stuffs...

    HEY... our mom and dad got to see a BARKUS pawrade in N.O. once... They LOVE Mardi Gras... and even got to attend a KING's FEAST after a pawrade once... We won't tell you about her Earning Beads on Bourbon St. though.

  14. Trying to fit us could be a nightmare cause we are so broad upfront and thin towards our butt.
    Lily & Edward

  15. I do NOT like wearing clothes (and don't)! Stanley doesn't care either way. Mom is jealous of all the girl doggies who dress up. And this is where we stand on the issue.

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  16. Chewy looks SO CUTE in his outfits, but my mom makes them for him to fit. I buy small and XS, but they never fit right. Bizarre. So he gets cute clothes that other dogs don't. :)

  17. We run into the same type of problems :( #lowriderproblems

  18. Bentley just needs a personal tailor.

  19. Toby hates dressing up so we are saved this particular headache. But I think you make a very good point. With all the different conformations of different breeds it must be almost impossible to standardize the sizes.

  20. We have the same fit our pug neck and chest sometimes we need a large which is far too long.
    Mr Bailey, Hazel & Mabel

  21. I even have trouble deciding what size to get Luke, and you would think as a Lab mix that he's pretty normal sized. But I had to get him an XL because of his length for the shirts and coats I got him...luckily in this case the shirt I already knew would fit since I had bought one before, but I'm not sure how the coat will be (haven't received it yet). I wasn't sure what to do, but cross my fingers and hope for the best.
    I don't dress the girls as a rule because they hate it. But Luke doesn't mind. My hubby wasn't nuts about the idea, but as it turns out the cold really does bother Luke so he's much happier with a sweatshirt or coat on.
    Jan, Wag 'n Woof Pets

  22. I can imagine Bentley is hard to find proper fitting clothes for... Shiner is not super easy either. Sometimes, they are tight fitting around her shoulder and chest.

  23. OMG, Bentley in the golf cap is too funny! I feel for you with trying to find clothes to fit Bentley. I, too, am of short stature and usually have to hem any pants I purchase. Have you tried clothes for small (human) children to see if any of them might fit Bentley?

  24. Such a good point! I thought it was difficult for me to find attire for my two because of their size. The largest size at the store never seems to be big enough. I didn't even consider breeds like a Basset Hound!

  25. We're just glad that the mom doesn't try to dress us up! There aren't as many clothes for cats as there are for dogs.

  26. Well...we took care of it here, the peeps like it, we hate ....but we out voted them 3 to 2, majority rules!

    The Mad Scots

  27. We love your Mardi Gras outfit. It seems that everyone has trouble fitting into clothes. Our mom has had trouble working with her crochet patterns that say they will fit a dog of a certain size and when she makes it "our" size it is too small. We guess there just will never be a "standard" sized dog.

  28. We luvs clothes 'round here, which are good, since my Momma luvs sewin' em (she usta make lotsa lil girl clothes when her girls were lil)... and now she's got Whit's momma sewin', too.

    The folks usta have bassets 'fore they had us westies... and so Momma knows just what ya mean about findin' somethin' dat would fit a large dog on short legs! You'd almost have to be able to make yer own pattern or know how to adjust 'em!

  29. I know what you mean. I can find adorable clothing for Phoebe, but I have a hard time finding anything that fits Isis! She's 50 lbs & has a longer back. All the best stuff is made for small dogs. Not fair!! Certain companies are the worst; their "Large" size will barely fit 11 lb. Phoebe! I love to dress my dogs up, they love it too 'cause they know treats are forthcoming!
    Love & Biscuits,
    Cathy, Isis & Phoebe

  30. Most peeps don't seem to dress up the cats with whom they live. At least, mine don't. Good thing, too, 'cause sometimes they have enough trouble just dressin' themselves. Yup, it's true. MOUSES!


  31. I love it, people have short stores! Bentley you look great in everything and nekkid.


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