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Stylin’ with Canada Pooch

Stylin’ with Canada Pooch

Toronto-based Canada Pooch makes fashionable-yet-functional coats, sweaters and boots for our four-legged friends, with the brand being best known for its cold-weather gear.

With the temperatures starting to drop, we decided to test a two-piece outfit for Opie, our 6-month-old test dog. The energetic Hungarian Wirehaired Vizsla was a perfect candidate for dog socks and a winter hat. What we ended up selecting for this precocious pup was the fashion brand’s Arctic Air Hat and a set of Slouchy Socks.

The Arctic Air Hat is made from a 97% polyester and 3% spandex shell with an inner polyester lining for comfort and warmth, with a snap neck and ear flaps for a secure and adjustable fit. The trapper hat, which is available in small, medium and large sizes, is machine washable, hang to dry and do not iron.

The Slouchy Dog Socks are described as non-slip socks that are designed to keep a pup’s paws warm so he can go exploring outside during unpleasant fall or winter weather. The socks, which come in sizes of small, medium, large and extra-large, come in sets of four. They are described as being 50% cotton, 50% polyethylene. This produces a textured, black sparkle fabric with a stretchy elasticity and rubberized non-slip sole. The company recommends spot clean dirt or machine wash inside out with closure fastened on gentle cycle, cold water. As with the Arctic Air Hat, the socks are hang to dry and do not iron.

We selected a large Arctic Air Hat, and it was a breeze to put it on Opie. The adjustable neck closure created a perfect fit. Thanks to the polyester faux fur lining, this trapper hat is a warm-looking accessory with adorable openings to accommodate Opie’s ears. It’s definitely a stylish statement piece for dog owners who are seeking the perfect retro-infused winter look.

Opie’s owner tried the different snaps to see what neck closure would make the hat most secure, but doing this also enabled us to realize that the ear flap snaps appear to be decorative and not functional. Then again, we couldn’t find a reason that someone would prefer to enclose a dog’s ears in the hat rather than have them stick out.

Although the open ear flaps were comfortable for Opie, he had his troubles with the brim of the hat, which would flop down and cover his eyes when he pranced, bopped and strutted up and down the aisles. We think a single snap, which would secure the flap to the top of the hat, would solve this problem.

We like the Arctic Air Hat as a high-performance article of clothing designed to protect a dog from the elements and keep it warm during the colder months. Despite the brim being a minor inconvenience to Opie, the Arctic Air Hat is still a cute product that would be a nice fashion statement for the style-driven urban pup in your life.

In contrast to the Arctic Air Hat, the Slouchy Socks were not as easy to get on Opie. We were lucky that he’s an easygoing pup who doesn’t get anxious when trying on clothing. However, the extra-large socks barely made it over his puppy paws and on his legs. The stretchy, slip-on design resulted in a very snug legging, white the spacious paw area appeared to match the true “extra-large” measurement of the sock.

As with most dogs, Opie was nibbling at his toes and did a funny, flamingo-like walk due to the unnatural feeling of wearing the socks. He quickly regained his balance and was showing no problem moving around. The rubberized paw area was durable and showed no damage from his nibbling.

The speckled pattern on the legs is attractive and trendy, so the socks check off the box for being fashionable, and their snug fit kept each one in place. The rubberized sole did its job to prevent slippage on the tiled floor. It’s indeed ideal for walks on a dirt trail, too. We didn’t get to test the socks in the snow, but we’re confident that they would perform admirably in terms of traction.

The biggest concern we had with the socks was the sizing, which is based on a dog’s paw. With a pup like Opie, his paws likely have not reached their full size. If an extra-large-sized sock was a struggle to slide over his paws now, will they still fit when he reaches his full size? And we don’t see even the extra-large size working for a truly large breed like a Rottweiler, Great Dane or pitbull terrier.

The socks present a mixed bag for dog owners. They are stylish and performed well, yet the tight legging can leave pet owners frustrated and dogs stressed out. These socks work best with smaller dogs, and they are more appropriate for an obedient dog like Opie, who will not get anxiety from the procedure of putting on socks or react with panic while wearing them.

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