During autumn and winter, the days are much shorter, which means more of your dog walks will take place in the dark. And when you're walking in low-light conditions or at night, safety and visibility become more important.
Here are six great accessories to make dog walkers safer and more confident in the dark. (It doesn't hurt that they come in some super fun colors.)
LED and Light-Up Dog Collars
Top pick: Nite IZE NiteHowel LED Safety collar
If you enjoy taking your dog out to the park in the early hours of the morning or in the evening, an LED collar can make it easier to keep an eye on them, even if they're off the leash.
There are plenty of options when it comes to high-visibility collars, but the Nite IZE NiteHowel LED Safety collar has fantastic reviews and rings up at just under $15 on Chewy (a bark-gain if you ask us).
Reviewers say this collar is "very bright" and "easy to use." What more could you want from light-up collar?
This is a very affordable and effective night light if you walk your dog after dark. It offers a solid color or flashing color. I picked red, and it has great visibility. My dog is small, and it was easy to adjust to fit. I'd definitely buy again.
The collar can be set to glow or flash. It's not waterproof, but it is water-resistant, which is handy when you have to take your pup out in the rain.
High-Visibility Light-Up Dog Lead
Top pick: Illumiseen LED Dog Leash
An LED leash can help other owners, pedestrians, or cyclists see where the leash is so they don't get tangled up with it in the dark. And if you drop it, it's easy to find.
The Illumiseen LED Dog Leash is a popular option and is available in two different lengths and six colors: blue, green, red, orange, pink, and yellow.
Dog owners find these bright color options useful, particularly for darker-colored dogs.
I love this leash! I often walk my dog in early morning or evening hours and really appreciate the added visibility it adds for us when it is dark.
The leash is rechargeable and offers up to seven and a half hours of run time from a five-hour charge. There are three light modes available, and you have the choice of keeping it on continuously or choosing a slow or fast flash setting.
Many of the reviews also rave about stellar customer service, which is great considering the product is warrantied.
Reflective Dog Vests for Dog Walking
Top pick: Safety Pup XD Urban Reflective Dog Vest
Reflective vests can be a useful piece of safety equipment. Even if a driver notices a pedestrian, they may not pay the same amount of attention to their dog!
When you choose a reflective vest, you should consider its visibility, the fit for your dog, and the quality of the material for durability. The Safety Pup XD Urban Reflective Dog Vest is a solid option for occasional use during nigh time or in other low-visibility conditions, like on a rainy-day walk. And you don't have to limit its use nighttime — it's bound to make your pup more visible no matter what time of day it is.
I live out in the country on a dirt road. when my dog goes wandering. with the safety vest on I can find her in the fields, [and] the cars can see her if by the road.
Some reviewers say it fades in the sun over time, so if you're planning on using a vest frequently, you may consider this higher-priced and higher-quality reflective vest from Ruffwear.
Don't forget, you can wear your own reflective vest, as your own visibility is just as important.
Reflective Dog Walking Harnesses
Top pick: True Love Dog Harness Safety Vest
If your dog doesn't need to wear a coat, a reflective dog harness will also keep them visible, especially if you're walking in an area with high traffic or on a busy path.
The True Love Dog Harness Safety Vest is a well-made harness and comes in small, medium, and large sizes with a good selection of neon colors that include yellow, orange, blue, and pink.
Reviewers like the fact that it's padded and *actually* holds up.
My 70-[pound] dog has had his for four years. No holes, no buckles broke , nothing. The only reason we ordered another one is because it got slammed in the door and a buckle broke.
Glow-in-the-Dark Dog Balls
Top pick: Chuckit! Max Glow Balls
A glow-in-the-dark ball is a nice accessory. You'll find a wide selection in different colors and sizes, but reviewers tend to favor the Chuckit! Max Glow Balls.
These balls don't require batteries or charging, as they're made from a special material that has a glow feature. The ball is "charged" when it's placed in bright sunlight for roughly 60 minutes.
I bought these for my pitbull mix (40lbs) and she absolutely loves them! She has so much energy and sometimes before bed she has zoomies. We get one of these balls and are able to play fetch with her in the yard! They hold a decent glow and the darker it is out, the better it glows.
Sure, you can buy just one, but trust us when we say these might become your dog's favorite toy, as they have for several of our staff. Get two to be safe, and make sure you select the right size for your breed of dog.
Dog Collar LED Light
Top pick: SpotLit LED Disc
Sure, you could don an LED headlamp or carry a flashlight, but both of these things can easily be left behind in the nighttime rush and excitement of walkies.
Another option? Buy a clip-on LED dog light to attach to your leash. Nite Ize comes to the rescue again with their reasonably priced $8 SpotLit LED Disc. There's also a rechargeable version if you don't want to mess with batteries.
Go wild with the color options or keep it simple with white.
As an added bonus, if you go to an off-leash area after hours, you can move the light clip to your dog's collar to keep an eye on them.
I loved the soft colors this light gave. I have a black dog and at night I [could not] see him. This allowed me to see his whereabouts.
There you have it. Between the high-vis dog vest, glowing leash, and more, you'll be staying safe AND taking the paw party with you wherever you go.