What is the Best All-Weather or Winter Coat for your Retired Racing Greyhound?

Greyhounds need winter coats, if you live in a place that's got any kind of winter weather at all.This is especially true of retired racing greyhounds who lived in climate-controlled kennels at the track. Here in the far northeast, most of our greyhound pets come off the tracks in Florida, so real winter weather can be shock to these dogs!

Greyhounds just don't have the body fat to help them withstand a northern winter, and they also have a very thin coat - almost no undercoat to their fur at all, and bare skin on the underparts - so their resistance to the cold is quite limited. If you need to wear gloves, your greyhound needs a coat.

No worries, though, if you've just adopted a greyhound and you're wondering about what kind of cold-weather coat to get for him or her, I can help. Actually, I've given a ridiculous amount of time and energy to ensuring that my own greyhounds have a proper winter wardrobe, so here's what I've learned about the best winter coats for greyhounds. And if you've got questions, I'd be happy to try to answer - just leave a question in the comment section.

Photographs © Flycatcher unless otherwise noted

Best Winter Coats for Greyhounds

are Dog Coats Specially Designed for a Greyhound's Long Body

Greyhound in Nylon-and-Fleece Winter Coat - Photo copyright © Flycatcher This is a picture of one of my greyhounds, a big 95-lb male, modelling his fleece-lined nylon winter coat – I call it a “ski jacket for greyhounds” and it’s my top choice for winter dog wear. Both of my current greyhounds have matching coats just like this, too cute when they’re walking or playing together!

This wonderful coat is the Great White North design, “Long & Lean” style made especially for greyhounds, by Chilly Dogs of Ottawa, Canada. (Up here in Canada, we do know a thing or two about winter weather!) I really do believe Chilly Dogs makes the best greyhound coats you’ll find anywhere, especially if you’ve got a couple of active dogs who like to play in the snow. The coats stay on nicely when they rampage in the snow, with the high fleece collar and chest protector helping to maintain their body temperature, and the nylon shell keeps off the snow and rain.

Y-Front All-weather / Winter Greyhound Coats

Water-Repellent Nylon Shell with Cosy Fleece Fabric Lining

greyhound in pink winter coat

Made-in-USA Greyhound Coats

Scooter's Friends Fleece-Lined Winter Jackets with High Collar

Scooter’s Friends brand greyhound coats, made in the USA and designed especially for the long lean body of the greyhound, are the next best thing I’ve found to Chilly Dogs coats.

Again, we’ve got a cosy fleece inside a nylon shell, with the Y-front that protects the chest and comes back between the front legs to fasten securely over the dog’s back, protecting that almost hairless under-side from contact with snow and cold.

I’ll go one about some other options in a minute, but I’ll save you some time and tell you right now – if you live in a place where you get any amount of snow in the winter, and you’ve got fairly young or active greyhounds who like to get their exercise no matter what the weather, I don’t think you can do better than the Chilly Dogs or Scooter’s Friends greyhound coats.

Three Sizes, Three Colors

The large 31-inch winter coats are sized to fit most large male greyhounds. Scooter's Friends coats are also available in a medium size (29") appropriate for smaller male and larger female greyhounds, while smaller female greyhounds will most likely find the 27-inch size to be the best fit. Click through on any of these pictures to browse for your dog's correct sizes and choose a color from black, blue and pink choices.

Greyhound Blanket Coat

An easy DIY Project if you like to sew

Greyhound in winter coat - Photo copyright © Flycatcher This is a blanket coat I made for my first greyhound (that’s him, the handsome brindle in the photo). The coat is sewn of cotton corduroy on the outside, with a double layer of fleece fabric on the inside, a very simple design. In fact, I made the sewing pattern right on him, by draping an old sheet over him and cutting it to size then using that as a pattern to cut the coat materials. I made it quite gracefully long over the tail end to keep it from blowing up in a wind, and it just ties closed under the dog’s belly.

(If you’re interested in sewing your own greyhound coat but prefer to work with more specific instructions, see my Retired Racing Greyhounds page for links to various free patterns I’ve found for greyhound clothing.)

Blanket Coats for Large Dogs

Water Resistant and Wind-proof, Suitable for Greyhounds

Blanket style coats, like a little horse blanket, are usually the safest choice of style if you're considering a regular dog coat for a greyhound to wear. This is because greyhounds, although they are deep-chested dogs with an impressive girth around their rib cage, are also built narrow.

Measure the length of your greyhound from base of neck to the tail, to choose the coat size, and be prepared for the possibility that you may need to take a tuck in the belly band to shorten it up, as greyhounds have such a slim waist.

Greyhound Coats for Sale on eBay

Find coats and other warm clothing for Greyhounds

The only real way to be sure is to measure your dog, and to recognize that the fit is most likely not going to be perfect unless you get a coat that is specially designed to fit a greyhound's unique body shape - long and lean. Fortunately, all kinds of greyhound clothes can be found, if you know where to look.

First, check out your local greyhound rescue group or greyhound adoption agency to see if there's anyone in the membership who makes greyhound gear as a fund-raising effort for the group. (I got a wonderful double-fleece blizzard coat custom-made for my over-sized male greyhound by that route.)

Similarly, keep an eye on eBay for greyhound coats for sale (and jammies, sweaters, and other gear), as a lot of greyhound owners who are skilled with the sewing machine have a little sideline in greyhound apparel. Dog clothing companies, too, sometimes put up lots of discontinued lines for auction on eBay just to clear their stock, so you can often find quite a good deal.

Here are some of the current eBay listings for greyhound coats - but do check back in a day or so, if you don't find what you're looking for right now.

Comments are welcome!

What kind of greyhound coats do you prefer?

I like the active “ski jacket” style of the Chilly Dogs or Scooter’s Friends greyhound coats, because my dogs and I have a pretty active lifestyle, but blanket coats are very elegant for walking in town.

Which greyhound coats do you like best?
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  • brianvallois May 10, 2014 @ 8:32 am
    My dog flex has a jaunty tweed jacket, he looks ace!!
  • dbodnariuc Feb 28, 2014 @ 12:22 am
    I didn't know greyhounds needed coats for the winter, I saw them shivering on colder days, but I didn't realize they were cold.
  • artyfax Jan 28, 2014 @ 6:38 am
    I used to smile at the "clothes" my son bought for his rescued lurcher. But now I accept that they are required. he has many coats some for cold and some for cold wet. My wife is as bad as my sons family for making sure that he is always wrapped up when necessary
  • KathyMcGraw Jan 12, 2014 @ 9:59 pm
    With the freezing cold weather lately I found this quite useful. I liked your line that if "you need gloves, your greyhound needs a coat!"
  • DaisyDixon Jan 11, 2014 @ 2:26 pm
    I loved the raincoat, that was adorable! My mom has a rottweiler and she wanted to get him a coat but couldn't find any, so she made her own using a blanket. I have to say though, I did chuckle a bit when I seen Duke, her Rott, wearing clothes. It just looked funny on such a big dog! But These beautiful greyhounds wear them quite well.

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