Safety vests. - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-04-2012, 08:55 AM Thread Starter
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Safety vests.

Anyone use them on their dogs? I'd like to get some reflective safety vests for Gryff and Keeta, but I'm picky, and would have some specific requirements:

- Ease of on and off - some vests like these look like too much trouble to put on and take off as it looks like the dog needs to step into it like a pair of pants:

Someting like this seems easy to use but not sure about the short length,

One or two straps around the body? (does it make a difference?)

Lenght on the back - I like the "traditional" full back look, like this:

but a lot of the models I see when I do an internet search are half-lengths. Has anyone found advantages or disadvantages to the full length vs. half length?

Special considerations for very cold weather: I would like something loose fitting and lightweight as to not interfere with the dogs' natural coat's insulation properties (so the first pic is out - dogs has to step into vest, and looks too snug). Something that sheds snow, and no plastic reflective tape that cracks and breaks in cold weather, like the reflective strips on my own safety vest I wear for walks (gone!).

This type of reflective tape is NO:

Plastic reflective tape gets brittle in very cold weather and breaks into pieces and falls off (as I know from personal experience).

And I'm pretty picky about esthetics too - Just want a decent looking vest, something like this:

And I don't really care for the half-size vests like these:

But I may change my mind about that if I read enough raving reviews.

There is just so much choice when doing an on-line search,
wanted to hear back from others about their experiences with different type of vests.


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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-04-2012, 09:14 AM
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This company will make a vest as you like and it fits very well and is easy to put on without having to lift a leg through a strap.

I used one for an air scent dog for years and had one made up for Beau that has no SAR lettering, just the reflective material [Cadaver dogs usually work "ingognito" but I wanted some kind of vest on him so he would not be mistaken for a coyote on larger area searches. They are very durable, seem to be comfortable to the dog, and can hold a light stick (the clip is not good for the battery operated sticks but I used a small zip tie)

The modified design works very well at staying on the dog through all kinds of challenges [mine have been through many briars and never once has gotten a dog hung up]. The most visible color would be yellow (the vest can be any color they have) and it is 1000 denier cordura.


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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-04-2012, 09:24 AM
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I have one of these but I must have ordered a bigger size as it covers more of Molly than this pic.

I can take a pic of her wearing it tomorrow if you like but I don't think this is quite what you are after.

GoodKarma (Leah) has some for her dogs, may be worth asking her

Ultra Paws® Reflective Safe-T Dog Vest-Ultra Paws

Miss Molly Moo (aka The Piranha/The four legged Mouth) GSD 31/10
Raennik Hassan (Cooper) GSD 19/10/11
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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-04-2012, 09:37 AM
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I tried several different reflective vests before I got this one and I love it! Easy on/off, good visibility, lightweight.


Phinneas - Min Pin 2/4/08
Milla - Orithia Z Diehlomov 2/10/12

Kya - GSD 7/15/00-11/3/13
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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-04-2012, 11:05 AM
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I bought one at Gun Dog Supply for Nadia and it seems to fit her well...maybe a tad tight around her middle, but it works and serves our purpose. I can't find a photo pf her wearing it right now, so will take another later today to post. She has a long body and it covers her well.

Here is the link to the one I bought
Quick Spot Reflective Safety Dog Vest. $14.95.

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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-04-2012, 01:28 PM
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The reason why most reflective vests are short or half-length is they are for safety and they want to provide visibility without causing the dog to become to warm.

I would recommend a GlowDog/Illuminite vest or coat. They are made with reflective material, so there are so strips or reflective tape-- the whole thing is reflective. The material they are made from (Illuminite) is also very brightly reflective, and it comes in different colors. They are attached using velcro straps so they're easy to put on and off. They make both a safety vest which I think only comes in orange and is half-length, and also a reflective coat which comes in different colors and is full-length. I own one of each (they were bought for different dogs).
If you don't like that one, Ruffwear always has well made products and they make a more traditional type safety vest.

Here is a photo of my dog in the GlowDog vest that shows how bright the reflecting is, this first photos is in the dark and the second is in the dark but with a light pointing at it:

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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-04-2012, 01:41 PM
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I posted about this recently too, for Rocket and running. I haven't ordered anything, mostly because he got neutered (retained, so had abdominal surgery) and didn't run for a few weeks.

Right now he is still wearing my Nathan running vest made for people.

Funny thing is, it's that traffic stopping lime-greenie/yellow, and he does NOT like the look of it. It's so weird. Once it's on, and he can't see it and after he "forgets" about it for a few minutes, it's fine. But when I pull it out, or take it off, his ears go back and he doesn't AVOID it, (he'll take treats off of it on the ground) but it's very obvious he doesn't like it. The color must be really loud to him.

Something to think about.

Here it is:Nathan Water Bottles Streak Running Vest - FREE SHIPPING at

~Elrond's Rocket of Rivendell, aka The RocketDog
hiker and runner extraordinaire

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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-04-2012, 03:34 PM
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ChicagoCanine - I'm glad you posted because I have been wanting a new reflective vest. I have a Glow Dog leash and collar, so I'm glad to know they have vests as well.

I found them online here: Glow Dog Reflective Fido Jacket
What size do you have? Thanks!

My current reflective vest was gifted to me and is this very inexpensive 3M product. It is light and breathable for warm weather. It's highly visible and reflective, to the point where people have stopped and commented on it. The XL barely fits Tara, though, so I would not recommend it for most GSDs. It also has velcro closures that seem to be wearing out, as they no longer stay closed very well. I would need to make some modifications for her to keep using it. All in all, it is about what you would expect for a $2.00 product. It provided the visibility and safety that I needed while it lasted.


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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-04-2012, 03:36 PM
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Lucia,do you likethis one? (Of course not for Gryff I have used this a couple times, and honestly like another one (orange reflective) better than this one..I'm the opposite of you, I like one that is not as covering as this if you want it, I'd be happy to send it to you ,,you pay shipping and it's yours
Just pm me if you'd like it.

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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-04-2012, 03:37 PM
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Diane - where did you get that? Is the whole pink part reflective?

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