Dog Diapers – Everything There is to Know

Reviewed By Julie •  Updated: 04/30/21 •  11 min read
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Have you ever considered dog diapers before? Perhaps your pooch is having accidents in the house or you have read that dog diapers can help when your dog is in heat. Either way, dog diapers have many uses and may be just what you need right now.

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But before you go out and purchase dog diapers, it is important to learn a little bit more about them. Let’s take a look at what exactly they are and the reasons you may want to consider a dog diaper. We also have some tips for shopping. So, let’s get started!

What are Dog Diapers?

If you have had children, you will be very familiar with how diapers work. You will be unfazed by changing them and dealing with everything that goes with changing a baby. Well, dog diapers are going to work in a very similar way. They are going to catch urination and make sure that your pooch is able to relieve themselves indoors. Incontinence in dogs can happen for many reasons. For some, it may have been part of their life as a disabled pooch. For others, it can happen suddenly due to conditions. This can include bladder stones, kidney disease and cognitive dysfunction syndrome. This is where dog diapers come in. They can allow your canine to go to the toilet indoors without getting in trouble.

Dog diapers are normally for urination and they are not designed to hold fecal waste. Only if your pup is immobile should this be an option. It can become messy and unsanitary. If your canine starts to use the diapers for defecating, they will have to be trained that this is not allowed.

You can do this through positive reinforcement when they go outside for the toilet, as well as by telling them off at the time.

There are actually different styles of dog diapers available. For example, if you have a male pooch, you may choose a belly bad. Just as the name suggests, this style goes around your pup’s midsection and it has an absorbent layer that can prevent urination around the home. In addition, there are full dog diapers that can be used for male or female pooches. There are even some people that make their own dog diapers out of baby diapers. Simply, they adjust the fixings and cut a hole for the tail. It is your choice which style you go for or if you want to attempt to make your own dog diaper.

Reasons for Using a Dog Diaper

There are many reasons why a dog owner may choose to purchase a diaper for their dog. From house training to urinary incontinence, let’s break it down and see the many reasons why you should consider a dog diaper.

1. During the Senior Years

Your furry friend may be house trained and never had an accident in the home before. But during their senior years, it is common for dogs to lose control of their bodily functions. In particular, they can suddenly start urinating in the house. In addition, if your pup has Alzheimer’s, they may forget commands that you have taught them previously. This includes where to go to the toilet. In these cases, you can help your canine stay clean by using a dog diaper and avoid having to scold your pup when it is not their fault.

2. For Urinary Incontinence Problems

If your dog currently has a medical problem, dog diapers may be able to help. For example, if your pup has a urinary tract infection or another issue with their bladder, their diaper can mean that they relieve themselves without having an accident in the house. When they have a medical problem, they might not be able to wait until you get home. So, diapers solve this problem temporarily. Of course, if your canine does have a problem, it is best to see a veterinarian as soon as possible to help clear up the issue. Urinary incontinence should not be a long-term problem is you see about it early.

3. Female Dogs in Heat

If your female dog has not been spayed and is still able to have puppies, you may use a dog diaper to prevent your carpet and furniture from getting dirty. Simply, your pooch can wear the diapers when they are in heat. But it is recommended that you should have your dog neutered to avoid a higher risk of certain types of cancer later on in life. A diaper should only be used until surgery can be arranged.

4. For House Training

Some owners swear by using dog diapers when they are teaching their canine house training. However, this is a tool they probably use to avoid damage to their carpets and furniture more than anything else. Indeed, it will stop your pooch from having accidents in the house. But it is unlikely to teach them they have to go outside. You will have to make the effort to create the association with outside and relieving themselves, which will take time and patience.

Could I Use a Human Diaper on My Dog?

There are some owners that actually use human diapers for their furry friends. Indeed, you may be able to save some money this way. But there are many factors you will need to consider. For example, the size and shape. It is unlikely that you will get a good fit for your pooch. After all, they are not designed with dogs in mind. This means that you might have to adapt them to suit your canine. Not exactly what you want if you are looking for a quick solution. You may have to play around with the sizes and it could be down to trial and error. Plus, you will need to cut a hole for their tail.

Should I Choose Disposable or Washable Dog Diapers?

One of the biggest decisions you will have to make when you are choosing dog diapers is if you want disposable or washable ones. Ultimately, the decision is going to be all yours and it will depend on what you prefer and why your pup is wearing a diaper in the first place. Let’s break it down and take a look at the advantages and disadvantages of both options.

1. All About Disposable Dog Diapers

Let’s start by looking at disposable dog diapers. Just as you would think, you can chuck them in the trash when they are used. This saves you having to clean anything and is good for hygiene. If you are not comfortable with the whole process yet, it can be good to start with disposable dog diapers. This can help you get used to the whole thing. In addition, disposable dog diapers are going to be good if you only need them for occasional use every now and again.

The downside of disposable dog diapers is that they can work out quite expensive. If you are going to be using them all the time, it can be costly to buy them on a regular basis. Another problem is that the material they are made out of tends to be less breathable. This is because they are not made from fabrics. This could start to irritate your dog’s skin and cause sores to appear. Over time, your dog’s skin can become inflamed and itchy, which might mean they do not like wearing diapers and try to get them off.

2. All About Washable Dog Diapers

Then you have the washable dog diaper. The obvious advantage to this choice is that you can simply wash them after use. This is good for the environment and it is going to be most cost effective for you. This makes it a good choice if your dog is going to have to wear diapers all the time. The fabrics that are used are designed to be breathable and this can be more comfortable for your furry friend.

Of course, you may not want to get involved in the washing of the reusable dog diapers. This is a task that not a lot of people enjoy. This is something you will have to consider and whether you have the time and patience to do this. It can also take a lot of time to choose the right material for your canine.

How to Use a Dog Diaper

Once you have decided on the dog diaper that you want to purchase, you need to make sure that you measure your pooch. The last thing you want is to buy a size that is too small or large for your canine. Otherwise, the diaper will not work as well. Therefore, take the measures of your dog for the diaper you have chosen. This will often include the circumstance around their stomach and legs. Dog diapers may have different directions so ensure you read them prior to purchase. Once you have received your dog diapers, they will be ready to use. Hopefully, you have chosen the right size so that they fit your canine well. You want them to be a good fit but without being tight around the middle or legs. If they are uncomfortable for your pooch, they might not like to wear them. Again, soft fabric is best as this avoids the chances of chafing and discomfort for your canine.

Normally, putting on a dog diaper will be simple. Just position it on the ground so that you can position your pup’s legs into the openings. Then you can pull the diaper up and around their stomach for a good fit. If you have chosen reusable dog diapers, you may have adjustments and straps to secure. This should be simple and you want to make sure they are secure but comfortable for your beloved companion. Is your dog’s diaper moving around and slipping? This can happen if the material you have chosen is soft. There are going to be some dog diaper designs that include harness straps. In other words, they can work with a harness to stay in place. You may want to shop around and choose one like this to avoid the diaper falling off or folding up during the day.

The purpose of a dog diaper is to stop the environment and your dog from soiling themselves. This means that it is important to check and change the dog diaper often. If you notice any soiling, this is when you want to put on a new one. It is a bad idea to leave a wet diaper on a dog for a long time. Problems may develop for your canine’s skin. If you want to, you can use gentle baby wipes to clean your pooch between different diapers.

Problems that Occur with Infrequent Diaper Changes

As we have mentioned, it is extremely important to change your dog’s diaper frequently. As soon as you notice that it has been soiled, you should remove it and put on a new dog diaper. Not only will this prevent smells, but it is also best for the health of your canine. Bacteria is known to develop and grow in wet environments. This means that this could happen for your pooch.

The last thing you want if for them to get an infection that could have been avoided.

One thing you should look out for is skin irritation. This is something that can happen if the skin becomes wet for a long time. Alternatively, it might happen because the dog diapers or uncomfortable and rub. If your dog must wear diapers, you should ask your veterinarian about a suitable skin ointment. This can help your pooch with their discomfort if the skin is becoming broken. Try to choose dog diapers that have a soft lining to avoid a rash from occurring, as well as practicing frequent changes.

Always remember that dog diapers should not be a replacement for potty training. It is essential that you teach your canine to go outside for the toilet. Otherwise, they will develop bad habits and further problems could occur.

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Julie is a graduate of the University of North Carolina, Wilmington, where she studied Animal science. Though contrary to the opinion of her parents she was meant to study pharmacy, but she was in love with animals especially cats. Julie currently works in an animal research institute (NGO) in California and loves spending quality time with her little cat. She has the passion for making research about animals, how they survive, their way of life among others and publishes it. Julie is also happily married with two kids.

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