Don’t laugh! I’m normally one of those people who see things like booties and sweaters on pets and think it’s just silly. BUT, in the last few months, our dogs have come home three times with a bleeding foot. So after envisioning one of my dogs bleeding to death out in the woods where they run or facing an exorbitant vet bill every time a paw is cut, I started looking at the dog boots in a little different light. If you have a better idea than dog boots I’d LOVE to hear it!
I looked on-line to see what was out there. Not only were the prices ridiculous (geez, I don’t pay that much for my own shoes!) but virtually every review from actual customers told about how the boots do NOT stay on. I was not about to pay about $30 PER BOOT (x8 paws) and then have them get lost! That is nuts! So, after seeing the crazy prices , I decided to attempt to make them myself. I tried it out with material from an old pair of jeans. They probably wouldn’t be too bad, except the strap would need to be quite a bit more secure (probably longer)…and it would probably need a more durable material in order to last any reasonable amount of time.
Here’s a front and back view of my grandiose attempt, for your viewing pleasure (riveting, I know):
So, since they didn’t even stay on for the walk to the end of the block, I decided to do a little more shopping research on line. I found ones that were $2.50 per boot plus shipping. They were supposedly the best ones, used even by the sled dogs. Quite a few reviews said they were the only ones that ever had a chance of staying on. I got a total of 8 boots (and shipping) for a total of $33.00.
On a funny side note, when I told my friend about my silly little dilemma, she told me she had a friend who knitted a string that would go from one boot, up over the top of the dog, to the other boot (similar to kid mittens). I thought that was pretty amusing. I can’t imagine that it actually worked, but it was amusing none-the-less!
So, when the boots came, I put them on the dogs for a test run. They stayed on while we walked on the pavement (about 1/2 mile) to the woods. But as soon as I let the dogs loose to run in the woods…not even there 1 minute and they all came off. I managed to retrieve six of them that day. The next day I found the seventh and the day after that I found the last one.
I figured I had not fastened them tight enough, because several people on the websites warned about cutting off circulation that way and so I was a little paranoid. So, the second time around, I made sure to fasten them tighter. Armed with all 8 boots, off we set again! This time, they stayed on for about 5 minutes and we left the woods minus one boot. It took me a few days to find that one, but I did. The next time, we lost one boot, which I found the next day. Hmm…see a pattern developing here? I am strapping them on pretty good at this point, and they are staying on through some pretty wild running and wrestling, but I still have to watch the paws (it’s a blur) so I can try to retrieve them when they do start to come off. So the last visit, we actually left the woods with ALL 8 boots (and I only had to put 3 or 4 of them back on during that trip). And best of all…NO cuts on the paws! So, I’m hopeful. I think we’ll only have to use them for those woods, since that seems to be the place the local teen punks seem to think broken glass belongs!
Here’s another riveting picture (at least it’s cute this time) of Houdini modeling the boots:
I’m not quite ready to pronounce these boots as fabulous. That’ll have to wait until we have a steady stream of visits where we leave the woods with all 8 boots still on the paws. Meanwhile, just a suggestion if anyone else decides to try them out…get the crazy flourescent colors (even if they are ugly). You’ll be glad you did when you have to start a search party for them!