`

Best Small Dog Sweaters

PetGuide
PetGuide logo

Your petite pooch might have a heart of a lion but he certainly isn’t built like one. The feisty and vibrant personalities of small breed dogs often make us forget how sensitive and fragile they are–and how much they depend on us to stay safe. This is particularly true when it comes to staying warm in the colder months of the year. Unlike some big breeds that boast a furry double coat that would keep them toasty even in the Siberian tundra, small dogs usually struggle to keep warm in the winter. And it’s all about physics, really: the smaller the pooch is, the larger surface area to volume ratio is. This means that tinier dogs have more skin in comparison to the volume of their internal organs, which is the ideal combination for faster loss of warmth. And it’s not just that that makes small and toy breed dogs more susceptible to the cold.  

Another great insulator is body fat- and most small dogs don’t have it enough to keep them warm. And if they do- it’s a sign of obesity, which opens up a whole new world of trouble. In other words, the potential advantages that mother nature could have given petite pooches for warding off cold are sparse, so it’s up to you to make sure your dog is not shivering throughout the winter. The best way to do that, of course, is to dress up your pooch in winter-appropriate gear. In areas where the winter temperatures drop way below freezing point, winter jackets might be needed to keep your pet dry and toasty in the blizzard. In milder climates, where winter is chilly but not too extreme, small dog sweaters are a great way to ensure your pooch is comfortable outside. Similarly, small dog sweaters can be a great way to warm up your pooch indoors if the situation requires it (hairless dog breeds, for instance, might benefit from this) or to stave off the chill in the autumn evenings.

When it comes to small dog sweaters, you won’t be limited by any factor apart from the size. There are thousands of designs to choose from so any pooch can find a perfect fit for their needs–and a pawrent match for their budget. Whether you want a cozy knitted pullover or a fleece-lined warm sweater for your petite companion, we’ve got you covered. Our list of best small dog sweaters includes all the best sellers, with different options for every pooch. The only thing you need is to choose one! And if you’re unsure about the size and the fit, scroll on to learn more about how to properly measure a small dog for a sweater. 

This stylish dog sweater is ideal for petite pooches–and it’s affordable to boot! It comes in a range of sizes that suit toy and small breeds- the smallest size is a fit for dogs between 3 and 6 pounds, and the largest for pets up to 20 pounds. The combination of wide ribbing and Aran stitches offers a timeless appeal and really makes this sweater look more luxurious than its price tag indicates. It is made from acrylic yarn that feels soft and pleasant to touch, and can be washed in the machine–so keeping this sweater spotless will be no hassle at all. Available in eight different colors.

Shop Now


In case you really want to pamper your pooch or you’re just worried that synthetics won’t keep your tiny doggo warm in the winter, this high-end dog sweater is the one to go for. Made from the softest pale grey alpaca wool, this sweater is all but guaranteed to keep your best friend toasty–it even has a cute hoodie with a pompom you can use to keep his little head protected from the harsh winds. The luxurious sweater is hand knit by artisan knitters and features a single white snowflake on the back. Simple yet so elegant! The smallest size fits dogs from 2 to 5 pounds, and there is a great range of larger sizes to choose from.

Shop Now


Show off your four-legged princess in this super girly, super cute dog sweater! “Designed for pups who love to turn heads”, this pink beauty will definitely get your furball a lot of compliments in the dog park. With a glittery crown (accented with sewn-on fake pearls) and “Bougie Princess” graphic print in gold on the back of the sweater, there won’t be any doubt who the boss of your household is! And not to mention that knit ruffle collar that looks insanely adorable–no one can be indifferent to that much cuteness. This sweater fits pooches that weigh 4 to 8 pounds with its smallest size.

Shop Now


If your cold-sensitive pooch requires more coverage and warmth when the temperatures drop, your standard pullover-style dog sweater won’t cut it. If it’s not yet jacket weather but most sweaters seem too light, this long-sleeved version will be a great transitional piece. The snug fit and the coverage of all four legs certainly contribute to the sweater’s warmth, but it’s the choice of materials that takes the cake. The combination of high-quality mid-weight stretchy knit and faux fur parts will keep your pooch snug as a bug–and be easy to clean as well. This sweater is available in a range of sizes that fit toy and small breed dogs.

Shop Now


I mean… how cute is this? Your pooch will put a smile on everyone’s faces as he struts his stuff in this bumblebee sweater! Made from chenille that’s extremely soft and pleasant to touch, this small dog sweater is not just adorable but comfy as well. The plush acrylic knit fabric can also be machine washed and tumble dried on low so no worries if your little bee gets some mud on his new outfit. Sizes are a match for small pooches–but check the dimensions for an exact fit.

Shop Now


Simple and sweet is never a bad idea! This dog sweater is made from a cotton knit jersey that happens to be ideal for mild climates and autumn weather- or it can be worn indoors if you have a pet that needs some extra sheltering even when inside. The material has a classic cable knit pattern that makes the garment look luxurious and elegant, and the high collar design will not just make your pooch look like a fashionista–but keep them toasty, too. This dog sweater comes in wine red and orange and four sizes that suit petite pooches. 

Shop Now


Another design for four-legged ladies, this sweater dress will keep your pet cozy and fashionable at the same time. The ruffle on the edge gives it that special cuteness factor! This sweater dress is made from a high-quality acrylic yarn that can be machine washed and tumble dried. And as if this design wasn’t great enough, the sweater also has a smart leash access hole on the back- so you can combine it with your pet’s harness! It comes in extra small and small sizes. 

Shop Now


This beautiful dog sweater is ideal for parents that don’t like their pooches to look flashy- but still want people to appreciate how stylish their doggo is. The combination of dark brown yarn for ribbing and cream tweed yarn for the body of the sweater makes a beautiful contrast, complemented by a back applique–paw, reindeer, or bone. It features a leash access hole on the back, as well as an adjustable collar (high or low). Best suited for small breed dogs–with a range of sizing choices available.

Shop Now


Cheap but cute–a winning combination in many a pet parent’s opinion! This cotton-blend sweater for dogs is simple in its design which makes it easy to put on and convenient to maintain (it can be machine washed). Choose between 10 color options for your pooch and one of 6 sizes that are a match for toy and small dogs ( the sizes run small so be sure to check the dimensions first).

Shop Now


Just because your pooch is small doesn’t mean you have to have him wear cutesy designs! If your tiny doggo has a big attitude, dress him up in this military sweater that will show everyone he’s not to be joked with (fair warning: it might make him even cuter than he is instead). The sweater comes in a classic army green color with a military patch on the back–and in one size that suits smaller dogs so be sure to double-check the measurements for the right match. 

Shop Now


Dogs come in all shapes and sizes: there’s plenty of variety within the small dog category, too. In fact, some would argue that small dogs are the most diverse when it comes to their body shape! You have the elongated Dachshund, the stubby French Bulldog, and the miniature Yorkie all lumped under one term, so it’s clear that choosing a sweater for your pooch based only on description ‘suitable for small breeds’ isn’t going to cut it. To make sure that your pet will actually fit in his new clothes, it’s crucial to measure them properly.

To start with, measure the length of your pet’s back: let the nape of their neck be your beginning point and the base of their tail the end. Next, measure the girth of their neck and waist- especially if the cut of the sweater isn’t European (with more room around the belly) and if the sweater has a high collar. One of the most important measurements to take is definitely the width of your pet’s chest as that’s where dogs tend to vary. Even at the same weight as their pals that comfortably fit in one size sweater, some pets might not be able to squeeze into certain outfits purely for their barrel-chested bodies. Depending on the cut and the design of the sweater you choose, you might also want to measure the width of your pet’s front legs- especially if the leg openings aren’t elasticated.

In some cases, the manufacturer will state all of the dimensions above, so you can compare in detail for the right fit. But usually, it’s the back length and the chest width that are used as the main points for picking sweater sizes- and if you don’t think you can determine the compatibility of the fit based on these two measurements, be sure to contact the manufacturer for some additional info. After all, it’s better to ask in advance than waste money on dog clothes that won’t fit–or fit poorly. 

Needless to say, some dog breeds are much harder to find a fit for than others. That’s why it’s so important to take everything into account if you want to ensure your pooch will feel comfy while he’s strutting his stuff in his new sweater.

Online shopping is always somewhat of a gamble–you can never be sure if you’ll get everything right without seeing the sweater in person (or ideally, having your pet try it on). However, if you know what to look for in small dog sweaters, the possibility of missing the mark is significantly reduced, if not eliminated altogether. Just pay attention to these details and you can’t go wrong! 

  • Measurements and fit

As we already stressed, measuring your pet correctly is the most important thing. The more precise you are, the smaller the chance of getting the wrong size. Sizing between pet product companies can vary A LOT, and what’s extra large for some could very well be small for others. That’s why you can’t go wrong if you always check the dimensions first (and not the labeled size or breed recommendation) and compare it to those of your pet.

Additionally, you should be mindful of the way a sweater is supposed to fit on a dog. It should be snug but not too snug as tight clothes can easily irritate your pet and be impossible to move around in. You want to be able to put your finger between the sweater and your pet’s skin comfortably. Lastly, potty breaks are a big factor in the fit of the sweater- if you have a male dog, you need to make sure that the belly opening is high enough to avoid messes.

  • Compatibility with leash accessories

A lot of small dog sweaters don’t have access for leash on the back–as they are meant to be used in combination with a leash and a collar. If you plan on your pet wearing a harness underneath the sweater, be sure to check if there’s a hole on the back for the D-ring to go through, or if you’re not a stranger to DIY projects–cut one out yourself if needed.

  • Type of fabric

The material of small dog sweaters varies greatly: and it definitely pays to splurge if it means that the fabric will be of a higher quality. Wool is great for colder climates as it is the best choice for keeping warm, but it can also be a hassle to clean. Cotton jersey is a good lighter option that’s soft to the touch and suitable for indoor use or milder climates. Usually, it’s the acrylic yarn dog sweaters or polyester blend fabrics that end up being the winning choice: they are inexpensive, easily washable, and usually warm enough for the needs of most pets.

  • Design

There are plenty of designs out there- from turtleneck dog sweaters to pullovers, all the way to lined knitted jumpers and hoodie-like sweatshirts. And your choice will depend on your pet’s body type and your own preferences. Just make sure you don’t sacrifice your pet’s comfort for style: the sweater should primarily be a way to keep them warm and cozy and not a fashion statement. Although, with the right choice, the two don’t have to cancel each other out!

  • Ease of cleaning

A dog’s sweater will undoubtedly get a lot of wear and tear- if it’s not dried mud then your pet’s natural odor or something in between will surely make you want to wash their sweater sooner rather than later. That’s why it’s great when the sweater is machine washable and machine dryable–it’s a minimal hassle and requires no special handling. Small dog sweaters that have to be dry cleaned or washed by hand will probably be a pain in the butt for most to keep clean, so it’s best to steer clear of those options.

We are committed to finding, researching, and recommending the best products. We earn commissions from purchases you make using the retail links in our product reviews. Learn more about how this works


Comments