How to Measure Your Dog’s Height

Measuring your dog's height is quite a bit more complicated than taking your dog's weight.

Luckily, you're in the right place to learn the step-by-step guide on how to measure your dog's height the right way.

Before we get to the steps, here’s a checklist of the tools you might need:

  • Tape Measure
  • Carpenter’s level/yardstick
  • Door frame or wall - to stand your dog against

How To Measure Your Dog's Height Correctly

a labrador standing against a wallPixelshot by Canva

Whether you have a large dog breed like a mastiff or a small dog like the pomeranian, your dog needs to stand upright in order for you to get accurate height measurements.

To ensure that your dog’s standing with good posture, try to have them stand against a wall. Their head must be in a level position with them looking straight forward. Smaller dog breeds like French Bulldogs or pugs are extremely playful and difficult to get an accurate height measurement off.

Keeping these smaller, more active breeds still can be quite a challenge, so you might want to rope in a friend or another helping hand when taking your pup's height measurements. 

Next, you can take the measurement. Measure from their shoulders' highest point (their wither) down to their front paws.

Remember that our beloved dogs are different from us, so we don't take their height from their head or neck. And remember to exclude the length of their hair.

Where Exactly Is Your Dog's Wither?

Your dog's wither is the tallest point of their body, and it is the standard place to measure your pet's height.

A dog's wither is located at the indentation between its shoulder blades, basically where a dog’s neck and shoulders meet. This is the most accurate point to measure your dog’s height  using the tape measure.

Measure Your Dog's Height Using A Carpenter's Level.

level tool to measure a dog

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For a more accurate method, instead of using a tape measure, use a carpenter's level if you have one. 

Align your dog's withers to the carpenter's level while leaning it also against the wall and ensure it is properly leveled.

Once done, make a mark on the wall (or door frame), but make sure to avoid drawing a very thick line for a few centimeters will affect the result.

If you don't have a carpenter's scale, you can also use a yard stick to accurately measure your dog.

measuring a dogs height with a pencil

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By using either a measuring tape or a yardstick, measure the height starting from the floor up to your point marked based on your carpenter's level tool. The number you get will be the official height of your dog.

Alternative Methods For Taking Your Dog's Height By Using a Flat Surface

If your dog is not comfortable leaning against a wall, find a flat and smooth surface like your table or your floor. Make sure to calm them down and ask a family member or a friend to hold them and keep them still. 

Again, Locate his withers and take the measurement using a measuring tape or a yardstick. Ensure that your measuring tool is straight and perpendicular to eliminate possible errors.

Using a height measuring stick

To make the measuring process a lot easier, you can buy a height measuring stick instead. It is a tool specifically made to measure the height of a dog, either a puppy or a fully grown dog.

Using a wicket

A wicket, on the other hand, is a U-shaped measuring tool. It usually comes with two legs that stand firmly on a flat surface. It also has a movable bar that can be adjusted to fit your dog's withers firmly. Normally, you can find wickets on the dog show since judges use this tool to measure the height of every participant.

And now ... Reward Your Dog!

a dog getting treats

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While this has nothing to do with taking their height, it is still necessary to reward their good behaviour. It's also positive reinforcement for the next time you need to take their measurements for a awesome matching hoodie or knit sweater.

Reasons Why You Might Want To Measure Your Dogs Height

As we mentioned at the outset of the article, getting your dog's height measurement accurate is necessary when shopping for dog clothes and accessories, but there are a few other reasons why you might want to reach for the measuring tape.

When using an elevated dog feeder

Elevated dog feeders have many benefits. They help with swallowing as your dog isn't constantly bending over forward for feeding. They’re great for senior dogs that have issues with mobility.

And they’re also handy to keep your home clean. A dog that uses an elevated dog feeder is much less likely to spill its food and drink all over your floor.

These feeders need to be set at the correct height, at the dog’s lower chest so knowing your dog's height is important for this.

Get the measurement wrong and you could cause your dog to bloat, or in extreme cases decreased blood flow.

Medical records

a happy dog at the vet

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Any dog's medical records should include the most basic information such as breed, age, sex, weight, and height. Keep these records and update them regularly to ensure vet visits go smoothly and your pet gets the care it deserves.

Purchasing other dog-related goods

You’ll need to measure your dog’s height if you planning on installing a doggy door to your home. These doors allow you to keep your house door securely locked while allowing your pet friend to move in and out of the home freely.

It goes without saying, though, that you’ll have to get your dog’s measurements just right to install the door correctly.

A second much-needed dog-related product you might need to buy is a dog house or dog kennel. Your dog will need to be able to move in and out of, lie down, and sit up comfortably in its new kennel.

Dog shows

a beautiful show dog

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If you have a thorough bread dog, you might want to enter it into dog shows from time to time.

To ensure that your dog gets matched up against the same breed, professional dog show judges often require a dog to fall into specific parameters.

They’ll require the dog owner to submit a dog’s neck girth, average height (standing upright) and even the length of your dog’s body.

Accurate measurements of all these different factors are extremely important if you want your dog to strut its stuff.

In Conclusion

In conclusion, measuring a dog's height is an important aspect of keeping track of its growth and development.

It's not only because it makes it easier for you to buy a dog's clothing or accessories, but also enables you to  provide valuable information for your veterinarian to track its overall health.

In order to get an accurate measurement you need the right tools, a bit of patience, and some ingenuity - to keep your dog still. The best way to measure a dog's height is by using a tape measure, starting from the ground to the top of the dog's shoulders.

Read On: How To Measure A Dog For Clothes In 5 Easy Steps