How to Make Snow Shoes for Dogs

by Sarah Mason, Demand Media
    Winter can be harsh on a dog's feet.

    Winter can be harsh on a dog's feet.

    Dog footwear protects against dry air, cold temperatures, road salt and sharp, icy edges, the combination of which can lead to raw, cracked paw pads. To make snow shoes for your dog, you'll need a few simple supplies.

    Items you will need

    • Permanent market
    • Paper
    • Ruler
    • Scissors
    • Tape
    • Nonslip fabric, (cordura nylon, pack cloth, upholstery fabric or suede)
    • Roll of Velcro
    • Sewing machine or needle
    • Thread

    Step 1

    Trace the outline of your dog's front foot on paper with a marker. Draw a second outline around the tracing that is larger than the size of the foot by 1/2 to 1 inch. Dog shoes should fit snugly so that they don't fall off, but not so tightly that they restrict blood flow.

    Step 2

    Measure the length of your dog's rear foot from the rear pastern to the hock, (the space between his foot and the first leg joint). This is the length the boot should be for every foot. Extend the length of the open end of your drawing to this measurement. We'll call this the open end.

    Step 3

    Fold the paper in half and cut the toe on the fold of your fabric. This outline will create one shoe.

    Step 4

    Lay the paper outline flat over a sheet of non-slip fabric such as cordura nylon, pack cloth, upholstery fabric or suede, and trace around it with a marker. When buying fabric, 1/4 yard should provide more than adequate material. Repeat this three times to create four identical outlines on the fabric. Cut these out.

    Step 5

    Fold the fabric in half, creasing at the toe, so that the two alike edges of each side align. Sew the sides together, starting at the open end, sewing over the rounded toe and back up to the open end. Do not sew over the width of the open end. Repeat this step on all shoes.

    Step 6

    Flip the shoe inside out. This will enhance the shoe's durability and appearance.

    Step 7

    Cut four pieces of hook-side (rough side) Velcro with scissors. Each piece should be between 1/2 inch and 2 inches long, depending on the size of your dog's paws. Sew each piece, either with needle and thread or with a sewing machine, onto the outside of the shoe, 1 inch below the shoe's open end. The Velcro will be used to make shoe straps.

    Step 8

    Measure the width of the open end of the boot on your fabric. Multiply this number by two; this is the length of loop-side (soft side) Velcro that is needed for each individual shoe. For example, if the shoe opening is 2 inches wide, each piece of Velcro will be 4 inches long. Cut four pieces of loop-side Velcro to your calculated length.

    Step 9

    Sew one loop-side Velcro strip next to the hook-side Velcro strip on each shoe. Place the loop Velcro strip to the right of the hook Velcro strip, loop-side down. Sew so that 1 inch of material is connected, while the rest is hanging free. When completed, you can wrap this Velcro around your dog's paw and connect it to the hook-side Velcro to secure the shoes in place.

    Tips

    • Flare the top of each boot outward in your initial drawing to make clothing your dog easier.
    • If the fabric is too dark to mark with a marker, pin the pattern onto the fabric and cut directly.

    About the Author

    Based in Fort Worth, Sarah Mason has been writing articles since 2009 on topics including nutrition, fitness, women's health and gardening. Her work has appeared in "Flourish" and "Her Campus." Mason holds a Bachelors of Arts in economics from the University of Florida.

    Photo Credits

    • John Foxx/Stockbyte/Getty Images