If you’re experiencing high summer temperatures, you may want to consider getting your dog a cooling vest. As the name suggests, these cooling vests allow your dog to cool down during the hotter months (preventing heat stroke and other heat-related problems).
A dog cooling vest may be essential for your dog’s health if you have a pooch that just doesn’t know how to slow down—even when it’s very hot.
Sadly, not all of these vests work the same, though. Some don’t work very effectively, while others can keep your dog cool for hours. To find out the best dog cooling vests, check out our reviews below.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites in 2024
|GF Pet Elastofit Ice Dog Vest
|Canada Pooch Cooling Dog Vest
|Kurgo Core Cooling Dog Vest
|Best for Puppies
|POPETPOP Dog Cooling Vest
|RUFFWEAR Dog Cooling Vest
The 10 Best Dog Cooling Vests
1. GF Pet Elastofit Ice Dog Vest – Best Overall
The GF Pet Elastofit Ice Dog Vest is the best overall dog cooling vest you can purchase. It’s easy to use, comfortable, and effective—all the features we consider vital when purchasing one of these vests. According to many reviewers, this vest far exceeded their expectations.
The vest is made from a stretchy material, so it fits snuggly on a dog’s body without spending ages adjusting it. It has a zipper across the back and two straps on the chest and belly. We particularly like that it has reflective strips, which are also suitable for low-light conditions.
Perhaps the best part is that this vest works well. You must soak the vest in cold water, wring it out, and then put it on your dog. The vest remains wet for an extended period while using evaporation to keep your dog cool. It works great in very hot weather.
This vest is easily the top choice for most dogs based on its effectiveness.
2. Canada Pooch Cooling Dog Vest – Best Value
For those looking to spend a bit less on a cooling vest, the Canada Pooch Cooling Dog Vest is the best dog cooling vest for the money. It’s cheaper than other vests we reviewed but is just as effective in most circumstances.
This cooling vest is more stylish than other options. It’s soft, cool, and lightweight, making it more suitable for smaller dogs. The buckle closure is very easy to take on and off. The vest works similarly to other vests, absorbing water slowly and then releasing it through evaporation. It can keep your dog cool for several hours without getting them very wet, and it doesn’t drip, either.
We particularly like how inexpensive it is without being cheaply made. It’s a great deal for those looking to try a cooling vest.
3. Kurgo Core Cooling Dog Vest – Premium Choice
The Kurgo Core Cooling Dog Vest is a nifty cooling vest that covers your dog’s back and chest. It’s high-quality and a bit more durable than others, which is also why it’s a bit more expensive. You’re getting what you pay for. If your dog has ruined vests or tends to be rough, this vest is probably your best bet.
Despite being quite durable, this vest is made to withstand rough terrain and weather. Its reflective strips allow it to be used in low-light conditions, increasing visibility to prevent accidents. It has a cool zipper on the back and two adjustment points, helping ensure a snug, secure fit.
This vest works well, using prolonged evaporation like most other cooling vests. You use it the same way, wetting it and then strapping it to your dog. The vest stays cool for an extended period, allowing your dog to stay cool in hot weather. It allows for a full range of movement, so your dog can jump, run, and swim easily.
We highly recommend this vest to anyone who wants to invest in a premium cooling vest for their dog.
4. POPETPOP Dog Cooling Vest – Best for Puppies
The POPETPOP Dog Cooling Vest works well for puppies. It’s comfortable and effective, using the same passive evaporation technique that other vests on the market use. It has several premium features, though it doesn’t cost much more than other vests.
It’s made from a breathable, cool mesh fabric that won’t lead to chafing, like other cooling vests. It has a buckle on the belly, allowing the cooling vest to be carefully fitted onto your dog and easily removed. The vest absorbs water quickly, so you don’t have to soak it long. It also doesn’t drip and is very absorbent, allowing the water to be gradually released even if your dog is particularly active.
Plus, we love that this vest is machine-washable. It won’t fade or shrink when you wash it, so you don’t have to worry about your puppy getting it dirty.
5. RUFFWEAR Dog Cooling Vest
The RUFFWEAR Dog Cooling Vest is more expensive than most on the market, so it is lower on the list. However, it’s a very functional harness with a handle, leash attachment, and many other features. It provides some very premium features for the money; it’s just a matter of whether you need those features.
We particularly love this cooling vest because it’s easy to use and very effective. It’s made from durable materials that can withstand outside activities and weather. The lighter color and reflective trim help increase visibility, especially in low-light conditions. It has three adjustment points, so you can easily adjust it to fit any canine.
The vest works thanks to its three-layer construction. The outer layer reflects heat and evaporates the water, keeping your dog cool. The middle layer is very absorbent and has a “storage” compartment for water. As the outer layer runs out, it sucks up water from the middle layer.
The inner layer transfers the cooling effect to the dog without absorbing water, which helps your canine stay dry. In this way, the vest is one of the most effective at keeping your dog cool.
6. JOYPAWS Ice Cool Dog Cooling Vest
The JOYPAWS Ice Cool Dog Cooling Vest is simpler than other cooling vests. However, it seems to work pretty effectively, and it doesn’t use the evaporation method other vests use. Instead, it comes with four ice packs and small pockets for those ice packs, and you freeze them and then insert them into the vest.
Therefore, this vest does seem to cool very effectively—for a short time. The ice doesn’t work as long as passive evaporation does. Furthermore, it takes some time for the ice to re-freeze (and you must remember to do it).
The vest is made from a breathable fabric to help keep your dog cool. It comes in a bright blue, pink, or orange color, which also helps with visibility. However, this vest isn’t reflective, but it has a buckle on the belly that makes it easy to put on and take off.
7. JUXZH Truelove Dog Cooling Vest
While this vest is a great option for many dog owners, it isn’t our favorite for several reasons. The JUXZH Truelove Dog Cooling Vest only has a zipper on the back—no buckle or Velcro on the front. Therefore, getting your dog in and out is a bit harder, and it may be even more challenging if your dog isn’t used to wearing harnesses.
With that said, this vest has the very effective three-layer evaporation method we’ve discussed previously. The outer layer sucks up water from the middle layer (which is very absorbent) and allows it to evaporate in the sun. The inner layer works as a shield between the wet middle layer while still providing your dog with the cooling effect of the evaporation on the upper layer.
Therefore, while this vest is still quite effective it isn’t as easy to use as others.
8. DOGZSTUFF Dog Cooling Vest
The DOGZSTUFF Dog Cooling Vest is pretty popular. It’s made from a cooling, microfiber fabric that makes it very soft and cool—even without the cooling feature. It’s bright blue, increasing visibility while still looking nice. The Velcro straps let you adjust the vest to fit your dog perfectly, preventing chafing and similar effects.
The vest works fairly similarly to other options on the market. You soak it in water, squeeze, and put it on your dog. We like that this vest is machine-washable, which is always a nice addition. It holds up well in the washer—better than most others.
With that said, this vest isn’t as durable as some other options. Plus, many users found that the mesh material doesn’t hold water like other options, so you have to re-soak it often.
9. Hurtta Cooling Dog Wrap
For the most part, the Hurtta Cooling Dog Wrap is pretty effective. It’s made from cooling mesh fabric, which is soft and cool. Many dog owners also found the colors to be more aesthetically pleasing than other options out there. In the end, it’s a decent little cooling vest.
You use it similarly to any other cooling vest that utilizes evaporation. It’s effective, soaking up a lot of water and releasing it fairly slowly.
However, we found the vest harder to get on and off than other options. It only features one adjustable strap, making it harder to get the perfect fit. For these reasons, we placed it lower on our list.
10. Canada Pooch Wet Reveal Cooling Dog Vest
The Canada Pooch Wet Reveal Cooling Dog Vest provides a stylish solution for dogs in hotter regions. One of the standout features of this vest is its breathable mesh material & reflective lining. It also retains water to keep your dog cool for a significant amount of time.
The mesh layers of the vest are another great design element. They allow optimal circulation and airflow, ensuring your pup stays refreshed and rejuvenated while wearing them. We appreciate that the vest doesn’t rely on chemical coolants, which can harm some dogs (especially those with sensitive skin).
However, the sizing can be a bit of an issue. It seems that you have to size up considerably, and even then, it doesn’t always fit well. There seems to be a sizing issue with the company’s size chart.
Buyer’s Guide: Selecting Best Dog Cooling Vests to Beat the Summer Heat
Dog cooling vests provide an effective solution to help regulate your dog’s body temperature, preventing overheating and similar heat-related illnesses. However, not all dog cooling vests are made the same, so you need to carefully consider any vest before you purchase it.
Here are some features we recommend keeping in mind:
You’re purchasing a dog cooling vest to keep your canine cool, so the cooling mechanism is very important. Dog cooling vests use different methods to keep your pet cool; the most common is evaporation cooling.
Evaporative cooling vests use the principle of evaporation to dissipate heat, requiring them to be soaked in water before use. This water then evaporates and cools down your pet in the process.
Some vests use ice packs. These vests work just like you might guess. You freeze the ice packs, insert them in the vest, and the ice cools your pet down as they wear it. These vests are often very effective but work for shorter periods (and you have to re-freeze the ice packs).
Size and Fit
A cooling vest doesn’t work well if you don’t size it properly. You should look for vests that provide detailed measurements for accurate fittings. Measure your dog carefully as directed by the company and use those measurements to choose a size.
What’s “small” for one company isn’t always small for another, so measuring is necessary.
A well-fitting vest should allow freedom of movement without being too tight or restrictive. Some breeds or dogs with unique body shapes may require sizing adjustments or custom options. Not all vests will fit all dogs, necessarily.
Your dog will wear this vest in the heat, so breathability is vital. You want proper air circulation to help keep your dog cool. Look for vests made of breathable materials like mesh or other lightweight fabrics. These allow for extra airflow, which can help your dog stay cool.
Even when using a cooling mechanism, dogs need airflow to stay comfortable.
A durable and well-constructed cooling vest will withstand the rigors of outdoor activities and last longer. Look for vests made from high-quality materials that are tear-resistant, easy to clean, and withstand regular use. Reinforced stitching and sturdy closures, such as buckles or Velcro, are indicators of a durable vest.
Of course, most product descriptions say the vest is very durable; however, you can’t always believe everything you read. For this reason, we recommend checking the internet for reviews like ours before purchasing any vest, and they’ll give you a clue as to how durable the vests are.
Ease of Use
You want a vest that can go on and off your dog easily. If the vest only has one buckle or the material isn’t very stretchy, you may find putting it on your dog hard. Similarly, a vest with a dozen straps may be overcomplicated and hard to handle.
Find a vest you can put on your dog in under 15 seconds. Most dogs will get antsy if it takes longer than that, even if they are well-trained.
Furthermore, look for vests that are machine-washable. You’d be surprised by the number of vests that aren’t. Machine-washable vests are much easier to care for, which is a huge bonus.
A bonus of a vest is that it can make your dog more visible. This feature helps prevent accidents, such as your dog being struck by a car, and bad things are less likely to happen when everyone can see your dog.
Reflective strips or accents enhance visibility, making your dog more visible to passing vehicles or pedestrians. Some vests are more reflective than others, and reading reviews is the best way to determine how reflective a certain vest is.
Integrated Leash Attachments
Some cooling vests come with built-in leash attachments or D-ring loops, allowing you to easily attach a leash without needing a separate harness.
You’ll probably need a leash unless your dog is running around in the backyard. This feature limits the need for harness and leash compatibility, as the vest itself becomes the harness.
There are many effective cooling vests on the market. Our favorite is the GF Pet Elastofit Ice Dog Vest. It has a very stretchy fit, making it easier to get snug on your dog. Plus, it’s very effective overall, keeping your dog cool for about half an hour per soak.
The Canada Pooch Cooling Dog Vest is an affordable and effective option if you want to spend less money. Despite costing less, it’s durable and keeps your dog cool in high temperatures.
We hope that one of our vest reviews above popped out at you. With so many effective options on the market, it is hard to go wrong with them.