Friday, August 21, 2009
Homemade Dog Boots
I copied these boots from the boot that I borrowed from Alicia to protect Breeze's foot after she tore her pad. Sorry I traced a pattern from the boot and it does not look really professional, but then I am not a professional!!!! Do not get too hung up on exact measurements and being perfect, just make it work for your own dog. You can click on the pattern and then print it and enlarge it or decrease the size on your copier or you can just make a big rectangle, but hopefully the pattern will give you more of an idea of how to make your own pattern. There is one boot pictured with no treatment on the sole, that is the opposite site, and then there is one on the side that has the caulking (which actually I like the best) that is the clear one that looks a little shiney, and then the others are done with a sole of puff paint. Good luck and have fun!!!!!
Choose your material:
FLEECE- is nice for light snow use, grass, or some dirt use, soft
CORDURA-330 wgt is good but cordura may be more abrasive on dogs feet, it is good for hiking but check the dogs feet often
DENIM-you can use old jeans, Denim also comes in a lot of colors so it can be fun that way, works nice on hot pavement, fleece and cordura may get very hot and can melt if they get too hot.
I am sure there are other materials that could be used,
¼ yard of chosen material will be plenty to start with.
¾ inch-1 inch wide velcro You do not need much I bought one of those little packs it comes in, you want the sew on velcro, not the stick on kind. If you are making boots for a tiny dog you might want a little narrower velcro
Elastic-I bought a color to match my velcro (I used black) and I bought elastic that was as wide as my velcro, in my case ¾ inch. If you have some scraps you can use that or a yard will be plenty.
Thread to match your material, or you could just match your elastic and velcro. You can also choose how you want to complete the sole of the boot, if you choose material for the bottom sole, or caulking or puff paint, you will need those, see the end of the pattern for ideas on what you think will work best for you.
The easiest way to make your own pattern is to measure your dogs Paws and add ONE INCH to that measurement, that allows for a ¼ inch seam allowance on both sides of the boot and ½ inch for the foot to swell.
Use this measurement to make a rectangle this wide and then make it as tall as desired, my dogs have their boots 6 inches high. My pattern was 3 ½ wide and 6 inches tall.
You can use the pattern I am putting on the site, or you can just draw a rectangle, if you use the pattern just use your copier to change it to a size to fit your dog.
1.fold your material and place the toe of the pattern on the fold, DO NOT CUT ALONG TOE END. When you finish cutting out your boot it will be a long hourglass shape if you use the pattern or a very long rectangle if you use the rectangular pattern.
2.If you choose to sew a non slip surface, or leather or ??? sew that circle on now in the place indicated on the pattern, or the approximate place on the rectangular boot piece. Just put that on one side, the other side will be bare. THE SOLE WILL BE ON THE SAME SIDE AS YOUR VELCRO IS GOING TO BE ON!!!!
3.Place your velcro, the soft piece-mine is about 1 ½ inches long, take the elastic and catch the end of the elastic under the one side of the velcro so both are sewn down at the same time-I sewed it under the side of the velcro that is on the right side if I am looking at it. THE VELCRO WILL BE ON THE SAME SIDE AS THE ELASTIC AND AS THE SOLE IF YOU ARE DOING A SOLE TREATMENT.
4.Place the hook, scratchy side of the velcro (mine was about ¾) on the end of the elastic facing down so when it wraps around the foot it will be facing the soft side of the velcro. Place it so the end of the elastic is even with the end of the hook velcro. The whole elastic piece should measure about 1 ½ inches more then your dogs ankle measurement. Sew around the hook velcro on the elastic to secure.
5.NOW you can secure your elastic so it will not catch in the seams....fold your boot in half so the sole and the velcro and elastic are on the inside. Pin this and you can sew up the sides using a ¼ inch seam allowance.
6.Turn the boot right side out and trim all your threads and your boot should be ready unless you want to add on a treatment onto the sold of the boot.
BOOT SOLE OPTIONS:
1.You can use some leather scraps cur in a circle and sewn on before you sew on your velcro
2.You can sew on some non slip material, sew this on before the velcro sewing step
3.THIS IS COOL------Use some caulk-like kitchen or bathroom caulk-YEP YOU HEARD ME RIGHT, I got the squeeze tube of DAP caulking at Target. You can easily get this at a hard ware store or more department stores. I got clear, but you could get white or what ever other color they have. After your bootie is done just squirt some on and spread in a little circle, then I sort of touched it and made it more bumpy to make it more slip resistant. The clear dries fairly clear, you can see it is there but it is flexible, waterproof and gives some good traction. Latex caulk is more slip resistant I am told then silicone.
4.Puff Paint, you can get Puff Paint, I got TULIP brand from Michael's, they sell it around here at Joann's too, and I am sure it is sold at a lot of other places, pick out the color/colors you like. Take and make dots or lines, squiggles, what ever you like where the circle is on the pattern, let it dry at least four hours, then spray steam from your iron on the paint and it will magically puff up. This stays very flexible, soft and seems like it would protect if the grass was a little wet, provide a little padding.
If you make the boot out of something that ravels, then you might want to pink the top edge with pinking sheers, or allow extra material to use some binding tape or hem the top and you might want to allow a little extra seam allowance. I made mine out of fleece, but plan to make some denim ones in the future. Fleece was a really easy material to make the boots out of.
Of course the normal rules of caution apply, I would not leave a wet boot on the dog too long, but these would be great to keep snow out of dogs paws (although in the desert that will probably not often be my problem), I would check often to make sure the boot has not twisted, I would check the pad to make sure nothing was irritating it every so often, I would not have it so tight that the circulation was cut off and if the dog is on hot surfaces I would take off the boot and look and make sure they were being protected every so often and especially if I had some type of paint or caulk on the sole, I am not sure that it would hurt the dog but I would not leave the dog with any boots on if they are not supervised.