Sizing Your Dog’s Sweater

Sweater season is almost upon us!

With temperatures dropping, many dog owners may want to buy their dog a new cozy sweater for the season. Maybe you want something cozy, or cute, or themed, but whatever your taste…you want to make sure that it fits!

The Basics

Mastiff in a Sparkpaws teddy bear sweater

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Doggy sweaters don’t always have a lot of ‘give’ to them, and if you fit your dog well, they need to be rather snug. Most dog clothing websites will have sizes available in ‘breed’ and ‘measurement’.

‘Breed’ will give you the general average of the typical size of the dog breed you are trying to buy for. This may be a good starting point to give you an average size. Some dogs may also have thicker fur, such as a golden retriever, or skin folds, such as a bulldog, that can affect sizing.

You may be tempted to go by breed-size and call it a day, but not all dogs are built equal. If you have a mix-breed, or if your dog is a bit more muscular, chubbier, or skinnier than average - then you will need to still get their measurements to be as accurate as possible.

Sizing by Measurement

To size a dog accurately by measurement, it's best if you have a soft measuring tape that can easily wrap around your dog’s body. It's normally best to write down your dog’s measurements in both centimeters and inches. Some sites will have both, but it's good to have them anyway.

There are three main sizes necessary for the dog sweater size chart - The length, the chest girth, and the neck.

Remember! Any dog under two years is still technically a puppy, and is still growing - Therefore you may need to buy a little larger or resize them regularly.

French Bulldog in a pineapple sweater

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The Length

To get a good measure of your dog’s back length, you will need to run the measuring tape along the length of their back. This is roughly from around the area their collar sits to the base of the tail. 

Bull Terrier in a teddy bear sweater - Back measurement

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The Chest Girth

This measurement will give you an idea of how large your dog is. To measure the girth, wrap the measuring tape around the dog’s chest - from around the area between their shoulders down to the widest part of their chest - behind their front legs.

Even if your dog is a bit plump or furry - don’t squeeze too tight. A sweater needs to sit comfortably on the body and should not compress or squeeze them too closely. If you suspect that your dog may still grow a bit, such as a rescue pup that's still gaining weight, then you should maybe add a bit to this measurement.

Sparkpaws also has large, wide-chested dogs, such as the American Bully, in mind. So no need to worry about sizing mistakes.

French Bull dog in a pink sweater - Chest measurement

Sparkpaws Catalog

Neck Girth

A dog’s neck girth measurement will make sure that a sweater is a perfect fit and won’t make your pup uncomfortable. This is roughly the area where a dog’s collar would sit at the base of the neck and will make sure that the sweater can slide on comfortably.

How to measure your dogs neck

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If you’re still unsure - Check out a ‘How To’ video Here for a demonstration.

All Sparkpaws apparel offers a free return for your first purchase - allowing you to perfect your sizing. Additional returns may fall on your own pocket, provided the clothes are new and undamaged.

French Bulldog in a black teddy bear sweater


Though it may seem confusing, it's not too difficult to size your dog for a doggy sweater.

All you will need is a breed estimate - and their length, girth, and neck girth to be able to determine what size you will need.

If you’re feeling confident - why not test your new skills on our Sparkpaws knit sweater catalog to see just how easy our sizing guides can be. We also have a selection of cozy knit hats to keep your dog’s ears as warm as the rest of them.

We are confident that you will find the perfect sweater to keep your dog warm and cozy in the months ahead.