Extreme temperatures that come into contact with dogs' paws can cause them to feel soar, achy and uncomfortable. At times, it can lead to cuts, infections and paw damage. Providing dog shoes for a sensitive-pawed pet is highly beneficial to maintaining healthy paws and a happy dog.
Choose Colorful Fabric
Choose fabric that best suits your current weather conditions. Wool, fleece, denim and suede are most useful in cold climates. Mesh and fleece material are recommended for hot weather. In addition, you will need to purchase suede fabric in any color; this will be used for the wear pad at the bottom of the dog shoe. Choose any color or print of fabric that will best express your dog's personality. You will also need Velcro strips for this project. You can purchase them in any size; however, you will want to cut them into horizontal strips that are 3/4 inch wide.
Customize the Size
Place a piece of paper on a flat surface, like a tabletop. Gently place your dog's paw flat on the paper. Draw a line surrounding the paw and trace up the dog's leg to the point where you prefer the top of the dog shoe to stop. A taller boot will provide additional warmth for your dog in colder climates. After tracing the exact shape of your dog's paw, add 1/2 inch surrounding the outline. This extra fabric is used for sewing and it creates a custom fit.
Design the Shoes
Take a piece of colorful fabric that you have chosen for the color of the dog shoe and fold it in half. Use the pattern that you just created as a guide to cut the fabric. Also cut the suede fabric for the wear pads into small squares. The suede fabric size is determined by the size of the dog's paw area only. Use the pattern you prepared earlier to determine the exact fit for your dog. Cut a square that will cover the lower portion of the pattern. A square allows full coverage; however, some pet owners prefer circular wear pads.
Create Custom Dog Shoes
Set your sewing machine to use a straight stitch. First sew the wear pad onto the lower part of the dog shoe; this is where your dog's paw will be placed. Next sew a strip of Velcro to the dog shoe, using the bristle side of the Velcro. The strip should be long enough to wrap around your dog's leg; add an inch extra to the length of the measurement. Place the Velcro strip horizontally, 1 inch below the top of the dog shoe. Only sew the tip of the Velcro to the dog shoe. The remaining Velcro should be loose; this will be wrapped around your dog's leg. Cut a 1-inch square of the fuzzy side of the Velcro. Sew it directly on top of the bristle part of the Velcro strip that you sewed onto the dog shoe earlier. The fuzzy side of the Velcro is where the bristle strip will hook around to meet for adherence. Once the wear pad and Velcro strip have been sewed onto the dog shoe, sew the remaining seams together, leaving the top seam open. Once completed, it should look similar to a sock.
Based in Miami, Shellie Alyssa has been writing articles since 2011. Her articles have appeared on a variety of popular and informative pet websites including munch.zone. In 2000, she was awarded an editors choice award for Outstanding Achievement in Poetry from the International Library of Poetry. She holds a fashion merchandising diploma from Penn Foster College.