By Stacy E. Smith
Today we received the gear we ordered from a company called D-fa, out of New Zealand. They seemed to have some cool stuff that we hadn’t seen anywhere else, so we ordered several things. Since there was tons of snow on the ground and around zero degrees (give or take 10 degrees), one of the items we we ordered was the Puff-Doggy Super Insulated Jacket that the company says was “Inspired by our favorite puffer jackets and sleeping bags.” Thank goodness it arrived when it did because a few days afterward the temperature was headed toward sixty degrees… in February!!!! I do have complete confidence that the mercury will dip deep once again. The Mid-west is like that.
We had our Saint Bernard Mix, Clyde, in mind for this one. Even though he is mostly Saint Bernard (according the the DNA test we had performed), he does not have the breed’s thick coat, nor any undercoat. He doesn’t let on, but he probably gets a little cold out there.
Clyde hasn’t really worn anything before. We’ve tried some of Keegan’s stuff on him, but it is all waaaayyyyy too small – Keegan weighs around 60 lbs. and Clyde weighs around 115 lbs., so you get the picture. We had really just been curious as to whether or not he would tolerate wearing anything at all. Since he tolerated it just fine we knew it would be okay to order something of his very own to wear.
So, before we tell you what we think, we’re going to tell you what they say about themselves…
First of all, D-fa’s mission statement, or “Dogma” as they put it is as follows:
“We don’t believe in dressing dogs in clothes. We don’t believe in scratchy fibers or sleeves you can’t get your legs through. We don’t believe in making dogs look like babies and fairies, pumpkins or elves. We don’t believe a handbag is any place for a dog.
We believe in gear that’s befitting the noble, bone-chewing, stick-chasing, pole-weaving, Frisbee-catching, people-rescuing and endlessly loyal creatures that we simply call DOG. Gear that makes it feel good to be a dog. To run, play, work and be by your side wherever your adventures may take you…
… around the block … to the park … into the wilderness.”
We LOVE that and happen to agree whole-heartedly. In any case, that gives you an idea of the type of gear they offer.
Here’s what they have to say about the Puff-Doggy:
Puff-Doggy is just like your favourite (they spell it that way in other countries) down jacket or sleeping bag, but made with the specific needs of Rover in mind.
We’ve designed it to fit all-over-Rover with elbow caps and more coverage over the neck and thigh area. It incorporates our new thermal ‘bone zone’ to warm over the shoulders, hips and spine where it’s needed most without adding all-over bulk or weight.
Puff-Doggy packs down smaller than a Chihuahua into its internal stuff-sack so you can fit it easily into your handbag … oops, we mean backpack.
Puff-Doggy is great for dogs living, playing or camping out in cold or snowy conditions or for those who suffer cold or age related joint stiffness.
The features they say “you’ll dig” include:
- Thinsulate® 200gms bone zone (Clo 3.3) and Thinsulate 100gms peripheral zone (Clo 2.2)
- Thinsulate 100% polyester is breathable and insulates in dry through to damp conditions
- Water resistant Pertex® outer
- Elbow caps to protect and warm elbow joints
- Neck collar and chest panel to extend coverage of the jacket over cervical spine, chest and belly
- Deeper cut through thigh area for greater coverage
- Secure side-release cam buckles
- Super lightweight
- Compact to carry (medium size dimensions 7×4x2” and weight 10oz)
- Zero FAF (fur-adherence-factor)
- In-built stuff-sack
- Machine washable and quick dry
So, here’s what we say:
This is a cool dog coat! First of all, it comes in its own, reusable-for-anything-you want, mesh bag. I thought that was a classy and eco-friendly way to package something, rather than having it wrapped in plastic.
Second of all, when I took it out and felt it I can honestly say I was a little jealous. Not only did it really feel like a favorite down jacket, it made me start to dislike mine a little.
The Puff-Doggy was so soft, light and lofty I will now be heading out to find one just like it for myself. The fabric even feels more like silk than the nylon most of this stuff is made from. It is made from something called Pertex® – I have no idea what that is, but I want some outerwear made from it for myself.
The third thing we noticed was how easy it was to put on the dog. There was plenty of room for Clyde’s giant head to slip through and to buckle up and cinch the sides was easy as could be. But here’s the coolest part… there are elastic loops that go around each back leg AND the tail!!!! That is meant to keep the jacket in place as it is long enough to cover the entire length of your dog’s back. There is no way for it to slip off. The elastic loops have plenty of give – they were long enough to reach all the way to the ground and slip easily around each paw and spring right back into shape to fit around the upper part of the dogs leg, almost to the groin area. The elastic is loose enough not to dig or cut into your dog’s skin and is made out of something that makes it unlikely, if not impossible, for it to pull or tangle your pet’s fur. The tail loop is exactly the same and once in place seems to stay clear of the dog’s butt. That means he will be able to poop without any part of the jacket getting in the way.
We love that the coat has so much coverage as well and the “Zero FAF (fur-adherence-factor)” is a nice bonus. When you remove most pet-wear from your pet, the underside is covered with their fur and we don’t like to put things away like that. This coat eliminates the need to do any fur removal or immediate cleaning unless it has been soiled in some way. Good call, D-fa.
So we give the Puff-Doggy 5 out of 5 bones.
If you want one of your very own visit D-fa’s website, d-fa.com.
When you get yours, let us know how you and your pooch like it.
Below are some photos of Clyde enjoying the snow in his Puff-Doggy. Enjoy!