Does My Dog Need Boots for Winter Hiking?

Winter hiking with your pup is a great way to enjoy the outdoors and take in the beauty of the season. But before you head out, it’s important to think about whether or not your dog needs boots for winter hiking.

Dogs have thick fur coats that keep them warm in cold temperatures, but those same furry paws can be vulnerable to extreme cold and icy surfaces. Dog boots can protect their sensitive feet from the cold, salt, ice and snow as well as provide traction on slippery surfaces.

If you’re planning a winter hike, consider the terrain and weather conditions before deciding if boots are necessary. If you’ll be walking on icy or snowy trails, boots are a must for your pup’s safety and comfort. Boots will also protect your dog’s feet from sharp rocks or debris that can cut or injure their paws.

Boot Fit & Comfort

When choosing boots for your dog, make sure they fit properly so they don’t slide off during your hike. You may need to try several sizes before finding one that fits comfortably. Look for adjustable straps and breathable material that will keep their feet warm but not too hot.


Your pup may need some time to get used to wearing their new boots before hitting the trail. Start by introducing them indoors over short periods of time until they become comfortable wearing them. You can then gradually increase the time they wear them until they become accustomed to them.


Whether or not your pup needs boots for winter hiking depends on where you plan on going and what kind of terrain you’ll be walking on. While dogs have thick coats for warmth in cold temperatures, these same furry paws can be vulnerable when walking on icy surfaces, salt and snow. Boots can provide protection from extreme cold as well as provide traction on slippery surfaces, so if you’re planning a winter hike it’s best to err on the side of caution and invest in some quality booties for your pooch!

Photo of author

Alex Wright