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How to Measure a Dog’s Height: A Simple Step-by-Step Guide

Codee Chessher

By Codee Chessher

cute poodle dog sitting on weigh scales with measuring meter in the mouth

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Many dog parents might not think to measure their dog until they go to order a jacket or sweater and realize they don’t even know the measurements. Knowing your dog’s height helps make sure their crate and other accessories are the right sizes too.

Measuring your pup’s height and weight is also a good way to track their growth from a young age, but how to go about it isn’t very straightforward. To help you measure your dog’s height, we’ve come up with an easy step-by-step guide. So, check out the details down below to start measuring your pooch ASAP.

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Before You Begin

Measuring a dog involves more than you would think, but it doesn’t take a lot of special gear to do at home yourself. Take a brief look at the supplies you’ll need to get the job done. Some of it is optional, really, but you can’t be too prepared.

You Will Need:
  • Tape measure or yardstick
  • Flat surface with a solid, flat wall behind it
  • An assistant (for hyper dogs)
  • Pencil/pen/Sharpie/tape
  • Level (optional)
  • Treats (technically optional, but nice)
irish terrier dog having treats
Image Credit: LRuss, Pixabay

How to Measure Your Dog’s Height

1. Get Your Dog in Position

This step is essential to help you get an accurate result the very first time, so don’t cut corners. Have your dog stand on your flat surface against a wall. The wall helps confirm your measurements and keep a visual record.

Your pup’s legs, neck, and back should be relaxed and held straight. If they have a tough time staying still, have your assistant hold them to keep them still. You can use a leash to hold them upright, and it may even be necessary for more hyper dogs.

2. Identify the Withers & Mark

The withers are the center point between your dog’s shoulder blades, just behind their neck. Find this point and with your dog against the wall, put the level directly across the withers. Ensuring the end against the wall is flat, check the level to make sure your pup is in the right position.

If so, go ahead and mark the wall with your preferred method. A piece of tape helps avoid scuffing the wall, but some people like to make a mark with a pen or Sharpie to keep a record over time. Later on, you can repeat this whole thing to see how your dog has grown, much like a child’s growth.

close up of an old dog looking up
Image Credit: prakob ruji-ngern, Shutterstock

3. Measure

You can give your dog a nice treat and praise for being patient with you during this ordeal, and then let them go—their part is done. Using your tape measure or yardstick, measure from your withers mark on the wall to the ground. Make sure that your tape measure or yardstick is 100% straight, or your measurement will be off. Finally, write your dog’s height down and you’re all done!

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Unless you’re measuring your pup to enter a dog show, measuring their height from time to time is easy to do. It helps compare their growth against breed standards, plus a door frame height ‘chart’ is a priceless way to remember when your dog was just a wee baby puppy.

Featured Image Credit: Boryana Manzurova, Shutterstock

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