The Snuggie for Dogs is a fleece blanket with sleeves and three Velcro straps, designed to cover a dog's shoulders and most of its back. It comes in either pink or blue, and it's available in four sizes: extra small, small, medium and large. The ads emphasize that it "attaches securely in seconds" -- making it much easier to put on than a regular dog sweater or coat -- and will "keep your pet totally warm" outdoors in cold weather, or extra warm indoors. The Snuggie for Dogs is machine-washable. If you order the Snuggie for Dogs online or by phone, you will get a second one for free. In addition, you'll receive two free talking dog tags, on which you can record a message. (Advertisements suggest recording your contact information in case your dog is lost).
Though the commercials tout how easy it is to put on, people testing the Snuggie for Dogs for TV station KIDK (Idaho Falls, Idaho) find that it's not that easy to get on a wriggling dog. The dog gets used to it, but wearing the Snuggie doesn't induce him to go outside in the cold. On the other hand, testers at another station, KEYE (Austin, Tex.), find the Snuggie for Dogs easy enough to put on, but even easier for the dog to slip out of while running around. Getting the right size seems a bit tricky.
Other reviewers say the Snuggie's Velcro straps are insecure, too long or floppy, and note that the noise that Velcro makes can bother a dog. Other main complaints have to do with the fleece fabric. Tests conducted by Consumer Reports on the human version of the Snuggie -- posted at Consumerist.com -- reveal that machine washing the blanket makes it pill and shed so much lint that it gets very thin. Owners echo this complaint.
Despite these criticisms, some owners say their pets like the Snuggie for Dogs. The loose fit doesn't provide very much coverage for a dog running around outdoors. However, it does serve as a nice blanket for a dog lying down inside. If your dog seems cold indoors, or just needs some extra warmth outdoors, it might be worth trying.
We found quite a number of complaints about overcharges and poor customer service from people who ordered the Snuggie for Dogs online. That said, it makes sense to buy it at a local store with a good return policy.
We found the best video review of the Snuggie for Dogs at KIDK, in which a couple tries it out on their 4-month-old dachshund. A close runner-up is the video review at KEYE, where a lively dog attempts to run around with the Snuggie on. Photos of a dog wearing the Snuggie illustrate critical points in the detailed review at the Albany (N.Y.) Times-Union. A review at Consumerist.com covers objective tests of the fabric used in the human version of the Snuggie (also used for the canine version). We also found useful owner-written reviews at Amazon.com and at Petco.com.
1. KIDK (Idaho Falls, Id.)
This video review shows a couple testing the Snuggie for Dogs on their 4-month-old miniature dachshund, Penny. They initially struggle to get the Snuggie on Penny, but after attempting to wriggle out of it, the dachshund gets used to it. However, the Snuggie for Dogs doesn't make Penny any less reluctant to venture outdoors in cold weather.
Review: Does It Really Work? -- Snuggie for Dogs, Tommy Noel, Nov. 4, 2009
2. KEYE (Austin, Tex.)
In this video review, a pet owner tests a medium-size Snuggie on her dog Candy, whose length and weight should make it a good fit. It's easy to put on the Snuggie, but this dog quickly slips out of it while running around. Reporter Bettie Cross concludes that it might work, but only on a calm dog; either that, or the size recommendations are inaccurate.
Review: Bet on Bettie: Snuggie for Dogs is Put to the Test, Bettie Cross, Oct. 30, 2009
3. Albany (N.Y.) Times-Union
This review is especially useful because it shows two photos of a dog modeling the Snuggie for Dogs, illustrating columnist Michael Huber's point about how the Velcro straps are too thin to fasten very securely and stick up at odd angles. Overall, Huber is lukewarm about the Snuggie for Dogs, noting that it doesn't seem to have any advantages over other dog sweaters and coats. Quite a few readers add comments, including complaints about overcharges and poor customer service when ordering this product online.
Review: Bandit: Snuggie for Dogs Model, Michael Huber, Aug. 4, 2009
This critical review notes that the Snuggie's noisy Velcro material can bother a dog as it walks around. The review includes a link to a video report on tests of the original Snuggie's fabric at Consumer Reports' laboratory. After washing two Snuggies 10 times, Consumer Reports editors notice an excessive amount of pilling, lint and static.
Review: Snuggie For Dogs Strains Human-Canine Relations Nationwide, Nora Northrup, July 31, 2009
About a dozen owners review the Snuggie for Dogs here. Most are unhappy with it, citing poor fit, poor coverage and cheap fabric. The Velcro straps are said to be too slim and too long, preventing it from staying in place.
Review: Snuggie for Dogs in Blue -- As Seen on TV, Contributors to Amazon.com
Of the half-dozen user reviews of the Snuggie for Dogs posted here, about half are enthusiastic. One notes that the coverage is fine even for male dogs; they can pee without getting it wet. Complaints include a Velcro strap that's too long, fabric that tears, too little coverage, and the fact that some dogs just don't take to it.
Review: Snuggie for Dogs in Blue -- As Seen on TV, Contributors to Petco.com