The 8 Best Dog Life Jackets of 2019

Make sure your canine stays safe

Dog in life jacket jumping up

meaghanbrowning / Getty Images

Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Outward Hound Granby Dog Life Jacket at Amazon

"Provides everything you need to keep your dog safe."

Best Budget: Vivaglory Dog Life Jacket at Amazon

"Rings in at under $20 for the smallest size."

Best for Small Dogs: Frisco Dog Life Jacket at Chewy

"Though it offers optimal protection, it’s not overly bulky or heavy."

Best for Large Dogs: EzyDog Doggy Life Vest Jacket at Amazon

"The EzyDog Doggy Life Vest is a great choice for large breed dogs."

Best Design: Swimways Sea Squirts Dog Life Vest at Amazon

"The soft top fin adds a fun twist."

Best for Active Dogs: Ruffwear K9 Life Jacket at Amazon

"Though you’ll spend a little more, this life jacket is designed for active dogs."

Best Multipurpose: Kurgo Surf N Turf Dog Life Jacket at Amazon

"This durable jacket works as both a rain jacket and a life vest."

Best Durable: LL Bean NRS Dog Life Jacket at LL Bean

"The handles are strong enough to haul your dog in and out of the water."

  • 01 of 08

    Best Overall: Outward Hound Granby Dog Life Jacket

    Our top dog life jacket pick is the Outward Hound Granby Dog Life Jacket. This affordable jacket comes in a variety of sizes and provides everything you need to keep your dog safe. Ranging from x-small to x-large, Outward Hound can fit a dog ranging from 11” to 44” in girth. It comes in either plain orange or a fun fish design, and features dual grab handles for easy rescue if your pup finds himself in need of a quick lift to safety. Two belly buckles and a chest strap help guarantee a perfect fit around your pup while surrounding foam panels keep him afloat.

    With over 5,000 customer reviews, Outward Hound is a popular choice among dog owners. Reviewers say this affordable life jacket stands up to regular use and isn’t bulky or uncomfortable for all-day wear. If you’re hunting for a great low-cost, high-quality option, this dog life jacket is a great choice.

    Looking for other ways to keep your dog cool in the summer? Check out the best cooling dog beds available for purchase.

  • 02 of 08

    Best Budget: Vivaglory Dog Life Jacket

    Even if you don’t have a lot of money to spend, you don’t have to sacrifice quality for your pet. The Vivaglory Dog Life Jacket rings in at under $20 for the smallest size, but it doesn’t skimp on features. It comes in eight vibrant colors and five sizes, and fits dogs with chests from 12” to 38”. An easy-to-use grab handle allows you to help your pup out of the water and reflective strips keep him visible, even in low light. A comfortable velcro and buckle system keeps your dog comfortable for hours of much-needed exercise.

    Reviewers appreciate the affordability of the Vivaglory Jacket and say it’s easy to put on and take off. No matter your budget, keeping your dog safe is key, and with a lower price product like Vivaglory, you can still enjoy the dog days of summer.

  • 03 of 08

    Best for Small Dogs: Frisco Dog Life Jacket

    You want to be sure that your pup’s life jacket is secure and fits him just right, but it can be difficult to find the perfect sizing for smaller dogs. The Frisco Dog Life Jacket comes in five sizes, with the smallest aimed towards teacup pups, such as chihuahuas and toy poodles. Plus, though it offers optimal protection, it’s not overly bulky or heavy, so it won’t weigh your small dog down. The x-small jacket comes with one grab handle and three buckles to ensure a perfect fit. The bright orange color helps you spot your pup in an emergency, and soft 20mm foam panels keep him buoyant and above water.

    Owners say the Frisco Dog Life Jacket is well-priced and durable. They also mention that unlike some competitors, it fits well according to the size chart.

  • 04 of 08

    Best for Large Dogs: EzyDog Doggy Life Vest Jacket

    Many mistakenly think that their large breed dogs don’t need a life jacket, especially working breeds such as Labradors. But the truth is, even your Olympic canine swimmer needs water protection. The EzyDog Doggy Life Vest is a great choice for large breed dogs because its largest size fits pups over 90 pounds. With a safety grab handle and reflective bands, the EzyDog is designed with your large dog’s safety in mind. It comes in five sizes and yellow, red and camo colors. It also features a strong D-ring for a leash—and even a zippered storage pocket, so you can hide a few treats for post-swim.

    Dog owners say the EzyDog Life Vest is a great choice for large, active breeds who may be a little rougher than normal on their gear. Many reviewers say it holds up against strong pups and provides a secure, safe fit.

    Plus, check out our list of the best dog swimming pools for those days when the beach is just too far.

    Continue to 5 of 8 below.
  • 05 of 08

    Best Design: Swimways Sea Squirts Dog Life Vest

    Though your pup’s safety always comes first, we love products that add a little something extra just because. The Swimways Sea Squirts Dog Life Vest is a fun life jacket with a little surprise: a shark fin. Swimways comes in small and medium sizes and works best for dogs between 15-50 pounds. The jacket has three buckles for a secure fit and is made of flexible foam to keep your pup above water all day long. The soft top fin adds a fun twist, one that’s sure to put a smile on your face as your shark pup glides around the water.

    Dog owners rave about the Swimways Vest, remarking that it’s an affordable way to upgrade from a typical life jacket.

    Looking for more ways to dress your pup up? Take a look at the best dog costumes on the market. 

  • 06 of 08

    Best for Active Dogs: Ruffwear K9 Life Jacket

    There are many different reasons you may purchase a dog life jacket, but some watersports are a little more intense than others. If you and your pup like to ride crashing waves or kayak for hours, a rugged jacket such as the Ruffwear K9 Life Jacket is your best choice. Though you’ll spend a little more, this life jacket is designed for active dogs, providing enough coverage to keep him safe without restricting his movement in the water. It comes in six sizes, xx-small through x-large, and features sheltered side buckles that won’t get in the way during use. Though the jacket features reflective strips for low-light situations, you can even add on a Ruffwear light to keep your pup safe in the dark.

    Reviewers are extremely happy with the Ruffwear product, saying that while it’s slightly more expensive than many of its competitors, it’s well worth the price. Whether you’re taking your pup on a paddleboarding adventure or you simply want a little added protection, this jacket is a great pick.

  • 07 of 08

    Best Multipurpose: Kurgo Surf N Turf Dog Life Jacket

    The Kurgo Surf N Turf Dog Life Jacket is perfect for those beach days spent on and off the water. This durable jacket works as both a rain jacket and a life vest, providing protection against the elements when your pup is on land and buoyancy when he’s on the water. It comes in five sizes, and its bright red color makes it easy to spot your dog. Two traverse handles allow for easy maneuverability in and out of the water, and every product includes a lifetime warranty against defects.

    Because the Kurgo Jacket is lightweight, many owners use it on rainy day walks in addition to long boat rides. If you want a product that will get a lot of use all year long, consider the Kurgo Surf N Turf Jacket.

  • 08 of 08

    Best Durable: LL Bean NRS Dog Life Jacket

    If you’re worried about your best friend wearing out their life vest, we love LL Bean’s ultra-durable NRS Dog Life Jacket. Its heavy-duty handles are strong enough to haul your dog in and out of the water, with buckles to ensure it doesn’t accidentally come loose. The jacket’s shell consists of 1,000-denier Cordura nylon, which is simultaneously strong and lightweight. The vest also includes reflective tape for safe nighttime swimming and is available in sizes ranging from x-small to x-large.

    LL Bean is one of the top manufacturers of outdoor goods, so it's not surprising their canine products earn rave reviews from buyers. Several write that the NRS Dog Life Jacket is comfortable and easy to put on, and feels incredibly secure thanks to its handles and high-quality construction. If you’re looking for a life jacket that’s built to last, this is the one.