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Best dog walking boots 2022: Keep your feet warm and dry while walking your best pal

Here’s our pick of the best boots to keep you comfy and dry for miles while walking your four-legged friend

The best dog walking boots get your feet as ready for footpaths, pavements and puddles as your pooch’s paws already are. When choosing boots for walking your dog, think about how superior her four paws are to your humble thin-skinned soles. Paws are hard-wearing, insulating and waterproof, and they offer fantastic grip and protection on all terrain. They’re wonders of nature. Your naked feet, by contrast… well, they need extra help.

Get past the idea that dog walking boots simply need to be quick and easy to slip on and off. You’re not just putting out the bins: you’re off exploring with your best mate, a couple of times a day. So our list ranges from heavy-duty hiking boots to pull-on rubber ankle boots, all designed for comfort, weather resistance and durability.

Skip down the page to discover our recommended boots for dog walkers. Or, to get more tips on choosing your perfect dog walking boots, read on for our buying guide.

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Best dog walking boots: At a glance

How to choose the best dog walking boots for you

Why do I need special boots just for walking the dog?

“Just for walking the dog”, you say? Unless you were a serious hiker before you adopted your four-legged friend, it’s unlikely you were walking as much every day as you are now. Dog walks are rarely about nipping up the road and back. Instead, you’re out at least twice a day, in all weather, on all kinds of terrain, clocking up more miles than you ever did on your own.

So the best dog walking boots need to be up to the challenge. You can buy excellent walking shoes, of course (here’s our dedicated walking shoes article), but shoes get worn out much more quickly than boots, so boots tend to offer better value for money. On a more mundane practical level, walking shoes (let alone trainers) are more likely to let in sand, gravel and stones to bother your feet, and you can’t tuck your trousers into shoes when it’s wet and muddy. So, for dog walks, you need boots.

What should I look for in a pair of dog walking boots?

“Dog walking boots” is a pretty subjective phrase. Stores don’t tend to have special sections for them, unlike, say, horse-riding boots or golf shoes. The perfect boots for your dog walks depends on three main factors: the type of terrain you walk on, the amount of walking you do (a husky wants and needs to walk far more each day than a pug), and the type of footwear you’re used to.

Hiking boots are made for uneven terrain. They make excellent dog walking boots for long walks through the woods and countryside. But serious hiking boots can take some getting used to. And the stiffer and heavier a boot, the more uncomfortable it is for walking on pavements and other hard, flat terrain.

So if you’re not expecting to venture far from pavements and you’re not used to wearing walking boots, opt instead for a pair of light walking boots that offer good grip, weatherproofing and ankle support, but don’t make your feet feel weighed down. They won’t last as long as hiking boots, but they’ll be more comfortable and flexible.

Standard wellies aren’t designed for walking far. We’ve never found them to be comfortable enough for much more than the quickest dog walks (for a wee when it’s raining, say). But you can get well-designed dog walking wellies that are a hybrid of boots and wellies, offering support and comfort as well as keeping your feet dry. We’ve included a pair in our rundown, below.

What are the key features of the best dog walking boots?

Waterproofing: This is priority number one for dog walkers. Rubber and full-grain (best quality) leather are the materials to go for. Full-grain leather can feel a little stiff at first, so ideally look for leather walking boots with moulded insoles and cushioning to add comfort. Poor-quality leather will crack within a year or two, making puddles significantly less fun.

Comfort and support: Standard wellies are the most waterproof boots of all, but they’re not ideal for dog walking because they’re simply not comfortable or supportive enough. They’re made to keep your feet and legs dry while shifting hay bales, not for yomping miles with Roger the German Shepherd. The best dog walking boots have thick, ergonomically designed soles to alleviate pressure on your ankles, support your arches, and promote a healthy walking gait that won’t leave you with sore feet and legs.

Durability: A pair of trainers or cheap wellies will barely get you through a few long walks, even on the least punishing surfaces. Good dog walking boots are made of tougher stuff. They’re arguably the most important part of your dog walking kit, and therefore an important part of your daily life for years to come. So invest in a really well-made pair of rubber or full-grain leather walking boots.

Grip: This is another reason to buy good walking boots rather than pull-on wellies. Walking boots have a thick sole with chunky ridges, which make it much easier to keep your balance and stay comfortable when walking through mud, gravelly footpaths and uneven grass. All in a day’s work for a dog’s best friend.

Warmth: Winter is no excuse to hang up your walking boots. Your dog still wants and needs proper outdoor time. Most dog walking boots offer some level of thermal insulation, but winter walkers should look for the extra warmth offered by full-grain leather and special thermal fabrics. It may also be worth buying a size up to accommodate thick socks, but check to see what other buyers say about sizing.

READ NEXT: The best hiking boots for the great outdoors

The best dog walking boots to buy

1. Keen Steens Leather Waterproof Boot: Best all-around dog walking boots

Price: From £68 | Buy women’s from Cotswold Outdoor | Buy men’s from Amazon

Keen’s leather walking boots are the closest you’ll get to your very own built-in paws. The waterproof full-grain leather uppers are cut and shaped to provide ample flexibility along with protection, so there’s no wearing-in or plasters needed: they’re good to go out of the box. The addition of a breathable waterproof membrane and mesh liner help to keep the water out while also staving off any clamminess or smelly feet, whatever the weather. They’re also designed to be as easy as possible to clean.

They’re pretty nifty on the underside, too. Keen’s all-terrain rubber outsole provides brilliant traction in muddy woods and on slippery surfaces, but without feeling at all clumpy. They also provide lovely cushioned support around your ankle. Buyers reckon they’re among the most comfortable boots you can buy, even if you have wide feet, problem toes or arches that need support. You may find them too wide if you have narrow feet, though.

Key features – Material: Leather upper, EVA midsole and footbed, rubber sole; Waterproofing: Keen Dry; Sizes available: UK 4-14

2. Hi-Tec Altitude 6 Waterproof Walking Boots: Best for splashing through puddles

Price: From £65 | Buy women’s from Amazon | Buy men’s from GO Outdoors

Is it even really a dog walk without puddles? These excellent-value boots from Hi-Tec are as waterproof as you’ll get without having to stomp about in wellies. They’re less flexible than Keen’s boots but they are wonderfully comfortable from the first wear, despite having a pretty full coverage of full-grain leather, which has a special “i-shield” coating for extra waterproofing. Their comfort is largely down to the generous layers of ergonomic goodness that make up the sole: an ultra-cushioning Ortholite Impressions recovery foam insole; an impact-absorbing EVA midsole; and a high-performance Michelin rubber outsole. Inside, there’s a Dri-Tec waterproof membrane to help keep out the tiniest drop of water, and micro-fleece moisture-wicking lining for warmth and softness.

“These were bought for dog walking in all weathers and are working out perfectly,” reports one satisfied Amazon buyer. “Waterproof and comfortable.” Numerous buyers say they’re a little tight and advise buying a size up, especially if you’re planning to wear thick socks in winter. Hi-Tec makes its boots in half sizes to help you find the perfect fit, but availability of men’s sizes is currently more limited than women’s.

Key features – Material: Leather upper, OrthoLite Impressions footbed, EVA midsole, rubber sole; Waterproofing: Dri-Tec; Sizes available: UK 3.5-11

3. Brasher Country Master: Best for long dog walks in the country

Price: £140 | Buy women’s from Blacks | Buy men’s from Blacks

Brasher boots are glorious things. I’ll declare an interest here: these are my favourite walking boots and have been for about 20 years, in the city as well as the country. I found them to be instantly comfortable (certainly not something you can say for many hiking boots as solid and durable as these) and need no wearing-in whatsoever. In fact, they’re so warm and comfy that they actively make you want to go for a walk, and they’re so light and supportive that you’ll want to keep going. Your dog will be delighted!

Brashers have a heritage-inspired design that some might find a little clumpy-looking, but others (including me) find very beautiful. Beneath that classic exterior is a waterproof eVent membrane system designed to protect against all kinds of adverse conditions, including ice and snow, without making your feet feel hot. They’re pricey, but look after them and they’ll last a lifetime.

Key features – Material: Leather upper, polyurethane sole, Vibram vulcanised rubber outer sole; Waterproofing: eVent; Sizes available: UK 4-12

Buy men’s from Blacks

Buy women’s from Blacks

4. Solognac Warm Short Wellies: Best for short walks in the rain

Price: £20 | Buy women’s from Decathlon | Buy men’s from Decathlon

When you’ve gotta go, you’ve gotta go. And just because it’s drizzling a bit, or your dog’s favourite routes are full of mud and puddles, that won’t stop her from wanting a walk and a wee. So as well as your hiking-style boots for long comfortable walks, you’ll also want a pair of pull-on wellies that are constructed well enough to be comfy. And these great-value PVC wellies are so comfortable that you may decide to wear them even when the sun’s out.

They’re lined with seriously warm fleece that allows you to stay outdoors for 40 minutes in temperatures as low as -21°C. You can remove the fleece for washing, and the boots themselves are very easily hosed down after the muddiest of treks. They’re not made for long country walks, but at under £20 and available in a full range of sizes, including children’s sizes, these boots are a must-have for dog walkers.

Key features – Material: Leather upper, EVA midsole and footbed, rubber sole; Waterproofing: Yes; Sizes available: UK 2.5-11

Buy women’s from Decathlon

Buy men’s from Decathlon

5. Salomon Daintree Mid GTX Boot: Best lightweight boots for walks on firm ground

Price: £99 | Buy women’s from Cotswold Outdoor | Buy men’s from Cotswold Outdoor

Salomon’s boots are so light and flexible you’ll want to break into a run, which may please your dog no end. They’re made for walking, of course, but their lightness makes them best suited to firm ground. They do repel the water better than you may expect from the mesh fabric uppers, thanks to a Gore-Tex lining that makes the boot both waterproof and breathable, so they’re fine for drizzle and shallow puddles.

The Sensifit technology and raised uppers help them fit well on feet of all shapes, including high feet that can feel squashed by boots. The ankle could be somewhat better cushioned, though. And to help keep their light weight, the footbed isn’t as well cushioned as you’d need for long walks on tricky terrain.

Key features – Material: Flexible mesh upper, Ortholite insole, Contagrip rubber outsole; Waterproofing: Gore-Tex; Sizes available: UK 4-12.5

Buy men’s from Cotswold Outdoor

Buy women’s from Cotswold Outdoor

6. Blundstone Comfort Boot: Best for town and city walks

Price: £166 | Buy now from Rubber Sole

These leather biker-style boots are so stylish you’ll want to wear them all the time, from walking the dog to walking the red carpet (well, you never know). They’re not all good looks, though. These boots are made for hiking, with thick rubber soles based on the Poron Impact Protection system that’s more commonly found in workwear. They also have a removable ergonomic insole, and latex-seamed moulded leather uppers that keep your feet warm and dry in rain and puddles.

Blundstone footwear is renowned for being flexible and comfortable from the word go, and these are incredibly lightweight despite their slightly chunky appearance. They’re also really easy to keep clean, and should last for years.

Key features – Material: Leather upper, synthetic insole, rubber sole; Waterproofing: “Water-repellent”; Sizes available: UK 4-8

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