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The 8 Best Dog Shoes: Footwear for Fido!

Dog Apparel By Kate Brunotts 16 min read September 14, 2021

best shoes for dogs

Is Spot ready to strut down the street? Dog shoes can help keep your pup’s paws warm and protected from many types of injuries while you’re out adventuring together. Plus, they’re doggone adorable!

We’ll explain some of the benefits of dog shoes, outline some of the things you’ll want to think about when picking a pair of dog shoes, and identify a few of the best ones on the market below! 

Best Dog Food Shoes: Quick Picks

  • #1 Kurgo Dog Shoes [Best Overall Dog Shoes]: Rugged, lightweight dog shoes that are easy to put on, suitable for a variety of climates and surfaces, and feature light-up soles for safety (and cuteness, we imagine).
  • #2 Ruffwear Outdoor Boots [Best Value-Pick Dog Shoes]: Effective, well made, and comfy dog shoes that will will help keep your dog’s paws well protected at a very reasonable price point.
  • #3 CALHNNA Dog Shoes [Most Affordable Dog Shoes]: They’re not going to hold up as well as some of the other dog shoes on the market, but if you just need some low-cost paw protection, these are a good choice.

The Eight Best Dog Shoes for Protecting Your Pup’s Paws!

The best shoes for dogs

Let’s jump right in! Here are some of our favorite footwear picks for your furry friend. From cozy boots to cute Converse-style shoes, there are plenty of options for your canine companion. 

1. Kurgo Dog Shoes

Best Overall Dog Shoe

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Kurgo 01357 Step N Strobe Dog Shoes, Water Resistant Dog Shoes, Dog Boots for All Seasons, Dog Snow Boots, Anti Slip Dog Boots, Black/Orange

Kurgo Dog Shoes

Rugged, lightweight boots designed to protect your pup’s paws just about anywhere.

About: Kurgo’s dog shoes are high-quality dog shoes that are designed to protect your pup’s paws from hot pavement to ice, and anything in between. This flexible footwear set is equipped with reflective strips and an embedded light-up sole that make it easy for your and motorists to see your pooch in the dark.

Features:

  • Shoes are easy to adjust with a flexible strap and a bungee cord 
  • Flexible, textured sole is perfect for use on most terrains
  • Highly visible shoes have reflective details and LED light-up soles
  • Boots provide protection from ice, snow, hot pavement, and debris 
  • Dog shoes have a breathable design to keep your canine comfortable 

Pros

  • Owners were impressed with the versatility of these shoes, making them perfect for use throughout all four seasons. 
  • The shoes were durable enough for regular, frequent use by most dogs. 
  • The reflective strips and light-up soles are super fun and also help increase your dog’s visibility while you are out adventuring.
  • Pet parents loved how protective these dog shoes were with their thick yet flexible soles. 

Cons

  • While you are receiving additional features compared to other dog shoe options, these sporty shoes are relatively expensive. 
  • You aren’t able to replace the LED lights of the Kurgo boots if they wear out over time. 

2. Ruffwear Outdoor Boots

Best Dog Shoe Value

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RUFFWEAR, Grip Trex Outdoor Dog Boots with Rubber Soles for Hiking and Running, Blue Spring, 2.5 in (2 Boots)

Ruffwear Outdoor Boots

Breathable trail boots that are perfect for hike-loving hounds.

About: These paw protectors by Ruffwear are specifically designed for taking your best buddy on hikes, but they’ll also work for routine walks or improving your dog’s traction on slick floors. With a breathable design and a durable, textured sole, these are the perfect dog shoes for your canine companion. 

Features:

  • Lightweight, breathable fabric is made out of tightly woven mesh
  • Strong sole is ideal for a variety of terrains 
  • Adjustable dog shoes have a cinch-style closure strap
  • Shoes are machine-washable shoes and easy to clean
  • These boots are perfect for hitting the trail with your pooch

Pros

  • Pet parents were pleased with these trail-ready hiking shoes due to their durable yet breathable design. 
  • Most dogs seemed to find them comfy enough for long walks and hikes.
  • Owners were impressed by the durability of these shoes and appreciated the ability to machine-wash Fido’s footwear. 
  • The strong yet flexible soles provided pups with enough traction while out on the trail. 

Cons

  • These boots aren’t ideal for winter use since they aren’t very insulated. 
  • These dog shoes aren’t waterproof so they won’t keep your pup’s paws dry while playing in puddles.

3. CALHNNA Dog Shoes

Most Affordable Dog Shoes

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CALHNNA Dog Shoes Anti-Slip Shoes Dog Boot for Small Medium Dogs and Cat Puppies 4PCS

CALHNNA Dog Shoes

Effective and comfy dog shoes that provide paw protection at an affordable price.


About: CALHNNA Dog Shoes aren’t going to be confused with Kurgo or Ruffwear shoes anytime soon, but they will get the job done if you’re just looking for some affordable dog shoes. Featuring polyester uppers, non-slip rubber soles, and reflective strips for improved visibility, these shoes provide most of the things owners want at a wallet-friendly price.

  • Provide traction on slick surfaces and protection from ground during walks
  • Adjustable straps allow for a secure fit
  • Shoes are backed by a lifetime guarantee
  • Can be purchased in sets of 3 for additional savings
  • Available in 3 colors and 5 sizes

Pros

  • A great option for owners who just need a no-frills set of shoes that will work.
  • These are some of the most affordable shoes that will still provide the paw protection you want for your dog.
  • You can enjoy even more savings by purchasing these shoes in sets of 3.

Cons

  • For this price, you don’t get a lot of the bells and whistles higher quality shoes offer. 
  • Lifetime warranties aren’t as reassuring when offered by unestablished brands.
  • These are not available in sizes large enough for big dogs.

4. Muttluks Fleece Boots

Warmest Dog Shoes

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Muttluks, Original Fleece-Lined Winter Dog Boots with Leather Soles for Cold Weather

Muttluks Fleece Boots

Fleece-lined dog boots that are perfect for keeping your canine cozy during the winter.

About: If you’re searching for the perfect dog shoes for winter walks, you can’t go wrong with these fleece-lined boots from Muttluks. In addition to their insulated lining, these durable dog shoes have adjustable straps and leather soles to keep your canine comfortable and his paws protected while out on an adventure. 

Features:

  • Adjustable velcro straps for a comfortable fit
  • Warm fleece lining is perfect for winter outings
  • Leather soles conform to your pup’s paws
  • Sizing options available for small and large dogs alike 
  • Reflective straps help keep your pooch visible

Pros

  • Pooch parents loved that these warm dog shoes came in sizes suitable for dogs of all sizes.
  • These booties are machine-washable making them easy to use and reuse all winter long. 
  • The fleece lined and water-resistant shoes are perfect for adventures in the ice, snow, or rain.

Cons

  • These booties are relatively pricey compared to other options. 
  • A couple of owners found these boots difficult to put on. 
  • These boots aren’t appropriate for use during the warm summer.

5. WINSOON Dog Boots

Cutest Dog Shoes

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WINSOON Dog Australia Boots Pet Antiskid Shoes Winter Warm Skidproof Sneakers Paw Protectors 4-pcs Set (Size 1, Black)

WINSOON Dog Boots

Stylish dog boots that’ll protect your pup’s paws and keep him looking great.

About: Got a fashion-forward four-footer at home? These adorable dog boots may be the perfect pick for your pooch! These cute little dog shoes look just like the ever-popular human UGG boots and feature insulated interiors and faux leather exteriors. Your canine will love these cozy and comfortable dog shoes throughout the colder months. 

Features:

  • Insulated dog boots ideal for colder months
  • Textured rubber sole provides dogs more traction 
  • Choose between brown, pink, gray, or black color options
  • Adjustable velcro straps help keep boots securely on
  • Thick sole and fleece lining provides protection against the cold 

Pros

  • The padded, insulated design of these dog boots keeps dogs cozy while out in the rain or snow. 
  • They don’t just look good — pet owners were also impressed with how these boots were able to stay on for long periods of time. 
  • The stylish design of these dog shoes will help your dog turn heads while on walks. 

Cons

  • There aren’t any size options available for large furry friends. 
  • Some owners found these dog boots challenging to put on their dogs. 
  • While they will protect your pup’s paws, these don’t provide quite as much protection as more functional options.

6. Canvas Spot Sneakers

Best Dog Sneaker Option

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abcGoodefg Pet Dog Puppy Nonslip Canvas Sport Shoes Sneaker Boots Rubber Sole

Canvas Spot Sneakers

Stylish sneakers that are perfect for showing off Spot’s sporty side.

About: These Converse-style sneakers are doggone adorable making them a popular pick amongst pet parents. While the shoes aren’t designed for use in rugged terrain, they should work well for indoor traction or casual walks. They als make an amazing addition to your furry friend’s favorite costume or outfit. 

Features:

  • These lightweight canvas dog shoes are too cute for words
  • Lace-up shoes are easy to adjust
  • Textured sole provides pups with extra traction
  • Cute Converse-like styling
  • Choose between blue or pink color options

Pros

  • Pet parents absolutely adored how cute these sneakers are on their furry friends. They are perfect as a dog photoshoot prop or for completing your canine’s outfit. 
  • A couple of owners found these sneakers ideal for giving their dogs a little extra traction while walking around the house.
  • These soft canvas shoes were fairly comfortable for canines, even if they don’t offer a great deal of paw protection from the elements. 

Cons

  • The canvas sneakers aren’t meant to be used in inclement weather. 
  • These adorable shoes don’t come in sizes large enough for big best buddies. 

7. Pawz Dog Boots

Best Disposable Dog Shoes

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Pawz Dog Boots

Pawz Dog Boots

Rubber, disposable dog shoes that provide short-term paw protection.

About: These disposable dog shoes from Pawz are a great alternative to traditional dog shoes. Instead of worrying about the wear and tear traditional dog shoes endure, you can just use these until they wear out, and then throw them away (don’t worry — they’re biodegradable). Additionally, these waterproof dog shoes are super affordable, making them a great pick for tight budgets.  

Features:

  • Eco-friendly shoes are biodegradable
  • Affordable boot design makes these dog shoes easy to replace
  • You receive 3 sets of booties with every purchase
  • Lightweight rubber boots conform to your pup’s paws
  • Waterproof boots work well in a wide variety of climates

Pros

  • These disposable dog shoes are ideal for pets who only need to wear dog shoes on occasion.
  • Awesome for owners who don’t want to fuss with washing dog shoes — you can just toss ’em when they become dirty. 
  • Pet owners were particularly impressed by how well these dog shoes stayed on their canine companions. 
  • These dog shoes provide protection without being too cumbersome for finicky furry friends. 

Cons

  • The disposable boots are not insulated, so they may not be a good pick for super cold weather. 
  • The tight design of these shoes can make them difficult to put on. So much so, there’s a Jawz for Pawz tool designed for this exact purpose. 

8. Walkee Paws Dog Leggings

Best for Dogs Who Hate Shoes

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Walkee Paws Adjustable Fit Dog Leggings, As Seen on Shark Tank, The World’s First Dog Leggings That are Dog Shoes (Classic, M)

Walkee Paws Dog Leggings

Waterproof dog leggings perfect for furry friends who tend to kick off their shoes.

About: Unfortunately, some pooches don’t seem to like wearing dog shoes and rapidly engage in a hysterical “leg-kicking dance” in an effort to jettison their footwear. But there’s a solution to this common canine challenge — you can just fit your dog with Walkee Paws leggings instead. More like leggings than true shoes, these paw protectors will stay strapped to your dog’s feet despite his best efforts to slip free. 

It’s important to note that these leggings have a lower rating than what we’d usually require before recommending a product, but we want pooch parents to know that this option is out there. 

Features:

  • Easy to put on your pooch
  • Water-resistant fabric
  • Suitable for small to medium size dogs
  • Waterproof grippers for extra traction on the paws
  • Variety of color options to suit Spot’s sense of style 

Pros

  • These leggings were easier for many pet parents to put on their pooches than proper shoes. 
  • Most dogs didn’t mind wearing these lightweight leggings compared to dog shoes or boots. 
  • Pet parents found these leggings super easy to clean which made them a convenient choice for all climate types. 

Cons

  • Some pet parents found that these leggings aren’t as durable as traditional dog shoes. 
  • These leggings aren’t insulated, so they might not be the best pick for the colder months. 

Dog Shoes to Avoid: Save Yourself Some Money and Headaches

bad quality dog shoes

There’s no shortage of dog shoes on the market, and that can actually be a bit of a problem — product categories that are overflowing with options often make things more difficult on pet parents.

We obviously think the eight options discussed above are the best choices for most pets, but we know some doggo moms and dads will use these as jumping-off points and continue to search around for even more options.

That’s no problem at all — find the best shoes for your four-footer. But we do want to offer a bit of a warning: You should completely avoid the “bargain” dog shoes.

You can find dog shoes available for a few dollars if you look, but these super-cheap shoes are almost never worth the trouble of clicking the “buy” button.

These super-cheap shoes will rarely hold up for more than a walk or two, they’ll often fit poorly (which can lead to injured paws), and some will look different than they do in the photos.

And go ahead and forget about trying to exchange them or get your money back — a lot of these companies will have gone out of business by the time the shoes arrive in the mail (which, we should also point out, may take weeks anyway).

For that matter, you won’t really save that much money by opting for these super-cheap shoes — we’re talking a couple of bucks at best when you compare them to affordable, yet reasonably well-made boots (such as the CALHNNA Dog Shoes discussed above).

dog boots for rain

The end result is that you may save five dollars or so, but the shoes won’t work well, and you’ll spend the next month trying to rectify the issue.

Meanwhile, your poor pupper is walking around without paw protection.

There’s just no getting around it: You want to go ahead and invest the extra couple of bucks it takes to get your hands on some decent dog shoes — you’ll just avoid a ton of headaches (and cold dog tootsies).

How Do You Know What Size Shoes Your Dog Needs?

One of the trickiest parts of online shopping is finding shoes that fit your pooch perfectly. Here are a couple of tips to keep in mind to make sure you select the right size for Spot the first time around: 

1. Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines. Your best bet for finding the perfect fit for Fido is consulting the instructions provided by the manufacturer. Every shoe is constructed differently, so it’s important to take the time to check your furry friend’s measurements while shopping online. 

2. Trace your pup’s paws ahead of time. One way to cut down on your shopping time is to make an outline of your dog’s paws before picking out your best buddy’s new boots. This way, you won’t have to measure up your mutt everytime you select a shoe. Instead, you can compare the measurements to your dog’s outline, saving you some time.

3. When in doubt, err on the larger size or consult reviews. Footwear for furry friends can be notoriously small, so if your dog is between two sizes, it’s best to aim for a size up. With that in mind, every dog shoe is different, so it’s a good idea to scan the reviews for any sage words of advice when it comes to sizing. 

Why Give Your Dog Shoes in the First Place?

why buy dog shoes
Come on, buddy! It isn’t *that* cold!

Are you unsure whether your furry friend truly needs a new set of shoes? Here are some reasons why you may opt to provide your pooch with some fancy footwear:

  • They can keep your woofer warm. It can be a challenge for small or short-coated dogs to stay warm during the colder months, but some furry footwear can help keep in the heat. If this is your primary reason for purchasing doggo footwear, you’ll want to find shoes that are insulated or lined with a cozy fabric. 
  • They can help keep a dog’s feet dry. Some dogs simply hate getting their feet wet, and a reliable pair of shoes can help keep our furry friends dry while strolling in inclement weather. It also helps to cut back on the mess upon your return. 
  • They can protect your pooch from the hot pavement. Pavement retains a lot of heat which can be painful for your pooch to walk on during the hot months. But a good pair of kicks will keep your canine’s feet comfy. 
  • They can protect dog’s paws from nails, glass, or other dangerous items. If you live in a busy area like I do, you know just how much stuff can be left on the sidewalk. Dog shoes protect your dog’s feet from potentially dangerous items laying around like broken glass or nails. 
  • They can protect dog’s feet from ice-melt products and salt. Unfortunately, not all ice melts are pet-safe and some can irritate the skin or lead to other more serious issues. Thankfully, dog shoes can protect your pup by keeping ice melts and salt away from your pup’s precious paws. 
  • They can provide dogs better traction on slippery surfaces. Some dogs could use an extra grip from dog shoes while walking around the house or exploring a slippery area. 
  • They’re adorable! Okay, dogs are darling enough already but a dog in his own set of shoes? Incredibly cute. Need I say more? 
It’s Not Just About Your Pup’s Paws!

Keeping your canine comfy in cold or wet weather means dressing him for the current conditions! After you’ve picked the best dog shoes for your pooch, you may want to consider picking up a canine raincoat, a dog sweater, or coat with harness holes to keep him dry and warm!

Dog Shoe FAQs

Are you still on the fence about getting Fido some shoes? Here are some common dog shoe questions and answers to help you make the right decision for your canine companion. 

Do dogs like wearing shoes?

Dogs may not like wearing shoes at first, but many learn that wearing shoes means going on an exciting walk, or keeping their paws comfortable while enjoying the outdoors. Like anything else in your dog’s life, it’s important to give your dog time to acclimate to his new shoes. Take the time to familiarize your pooch with his new footwear and provide plenty of treats and praise to create a positive association with his new digs. 

Do dogs really need shoes?

Not all dogs need shoes, but plenty of pups benefit from dog shoes for a variety of reasons. Whether it’s for fashion, protection, or added traction, dog shoes are a valued tool for many four-footers. 

Does snow hurt a dog’s paws?

Snow can be uncomfortable for furry friends as winter weather can dry out your dog’s paws, which may lead the skin to crack. This can be painful for your pooch, so it’s a good idea to have a pair of dog shoes ready to go for their colder seasons. 

Do my dog’s feet get cold in the winter?

While a dog’s paws are generally more tolerant to heat and cold than our skin, they certainly have their limits. Dog shoes help keep your pooch comfortable and safe during the colder months.

Can hot pavement hurt my dog’s feet?

Hot pavement can absolutely hurt your dog’s feet, so it’s a good idea to have some dog shoes for the especially warm months. It’s also a good idea to limit the amount of time your dog is walking outside during the hottest months, and ensure that he’s getting plenty of water to stay hydrated. 

Do dogs get splinters in their paws?

Dogs can unfortunately get splinters in their paws, just like we can. If you notice your dog excessively licking or biting his paws after a walk, you’ll want to check the area immediately for any signs of puncture. Dog shoes can help protect your pup’s paws from these kinds of issues while out on walks. 

Can dogs get injured walking barefoot?

Dogs can certainly suffer injuries while walking “barefoot” (or barepaw, rather). Dog shoes can be used to protect your pooch while out on the town. It’s also a good idea to keep an eye out and avoid littered sections of the sidewalk or terrain. 

Do dog shoes help dogs on slippery floors?

Some dog shoes can help furry friends gain traction on slippery surfaces like hardwood floors. This can make it easier for your canine companion to move around with ease. Note that there are also dog socks available, which have non-slip bottoms and work wonderfully indoors.

What’s the Difference Between Dog Shoes and Dog Booties?

You’ll see four-footed footwear go by many different names, so don’t stress about choosing between dog booties and dog shoes.

They’re pretty much the same thing.

Sure, the best dog booties tend to come up a little higher and provide better protection from things like snow and puddles. But this isn’t a hard-and-fast rule — most manufacturers just apply the name they think will help capture the attention of pet parents better.

Concentrate on the materials, design, price, and aesthetics of your canine’s new kicks, rather than the name some focus group preferred.

***

Dog shoes can be a great way to keep your pup’s paws protected throughout any season. They also look pretty stinking cute, making them a staple for many pooch parents. 

Does your dog have shoes? Where’s his favorite place to show off his fancy footwear? We’d love to hear all about it in the comments below! 

dog booties
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Best Dog Booties: Top Footwear For Your Furry Four-Footer!

Written by

Kate Brunotts

Kate is a dog-loving content specialist with over a decade of canine-care experience. She is currently a professional dog walker and pet sitter, with previous experience working at the Heart of Chelsea Animal Hospital in Manhattan. When not spending time with four-footers, she can usually be found crafting top-notch dog-care articles that pet parents can trust. Kate loves dogs of all shapes and sizes, but Bernese Mountain Dogs hold a special place in her heart.

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