The 4 Best Dog Nappies Australia: Tested & Evaluated 2023
So, your dog is leaking. Not to worry, dear reader, it happens to the best of us. As our dog’s age, go through their natural hormone cycles or recover from invasive surgeries and illnesses, incontinence and leaks do happen. In those situations, we turn to dog nappies to help save our floors and furniture from any accidents.
There is no shame in it at all and dog nappies are quite comfortable for dogs in general. But if you're new to the world of dog nappies, you may not know where to start. Like a good nappy should, we have you covered! We teamed up with veterinarians, canine behaviourists, and dog parents to research the most popular nappy varieties. After months of testing and plenty of soilt nappies later, we finally agreed on this list of the best dog nappies Australia offers.
We’re also going to break down everything you need to know about dog nappies. Why use them, the differences between them, how to use them and our favourite options on the market today.
If your pup is leaking, we've got them covered for you.
Quick Picks - The Top 3
Our Number 1 Pick -
Dog Diapers Washable & Reusable by PETTING IS CARING
- Machine washable
- Well reviewed
- Leak proof
Runner Up -
Vivi Bear Pet Diapers
- Very absorbent
- Colour-changing technology
Third Choice -
Luxja Reusable Male Dog Nappies
- Excellent size range
- Discrete design
- Machine washable
- Leak proof
Australia's Best Dog Nappies Reviewed
There are quite a few factors to consider when shopping for a nappy for your dog. Now let’s dive into the various options for dog nappies on the Australian market.
Every option here is handpicked by our team of independent experts who tried them firsthand and loved the experience. You’ll be pleased to know that there are tonnes of variety and style here. We’re confident you’ll find the best option for your pup.
This product is from a company based in North America, which is why the title of references diaper instead of nappy.
Petting Is Caring make great all-rounder dog nappy. The model we are featuring here is the perfect set of nappies for dogs on heat. However, they do also have a model for male dogs that is more like a belly band.
Our expert panel loved these because they are versatile, comfortable and well fitted.
The stretchy material allows them to hug your dog’s body. It is made of a super-soft mesh fabric and double absorbent lining that ensures your dog is clean and dry for as long as possible
The Dog Diaper Washable & Reusable by PETTING IS CARING being tested by our independent expert team.
The outer layer is 100% waterproof and leak proof.
As for maintenance, these nappies are fully machine washable. Given they come in three-packs, you have enough to rotate throughout the day.
In terms of style, there are two three-packs to choose from. One has solid bright colours: purple, green and orange. The other has patterned designs for a bit of variety.
The best part here is the size range. There are five sizes in total from extra-small to extra-large. The smallest is suitable for a dog with an 8.9 cm - 24 cm waist. The largest is suitable for a dog with a 64.5 cm - 87 cm waist. Huuuge range here - it’s great. The stretchiness of the fabric adds to that perfect fit. Petting is Caring really has covered the full breadth of dog breeds which we love to see!
The cherry on the cake is the cost and the guarantee. Not only is this three-pack extremely economical, but it also comes with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
Huge thumbs up from us!
This product is from a company based in North America, which is why the title of references diaper instead of nappy.
Onto the little ones, and the Vivi Bear nappies are ideal.
These small disposable nappies are lightweight and teeny tiny. Perfect for small bums.
Our independent experts noted that they are breathable and comfortable, with a style very akin to human baby nappies. The extra-absorbent lining is made to stay fresh as long as possible and prevent leaks.
We love the clever colour changing technology the nappy uses to let you know that it’s time for a change. The nappy is patterned with musical notes and paw prints. The paw prints gradually fade from the base of the absorbent part as the moisture builds up inside. When the paw prints have completely disappeared, you know it’s time for a change. I guess it saves you from sniffing your puppy’s bum periodically to see if a change is needed!
The packs come with 14 nappies in total. The model comes in four sizes from small to extra-large. This is a decent range, though still less than our number one option with five sizes. The small size is very very small so do still measure your puppy’s waist to ensure you get the right fit.
If you are planning a trip and want the security of a puppy nappy, this is the one for you!
Onto male nappies now. The Luxja range is perfect for male dogs who leak every now and again.
These belly bands are quite discrete in a way. Of course, you can see them, but they don’t look like nappies. They almost look like back supports or something. Many passers-by would be none the wiser of what they are really wearing! That could be a plus for you if you are not a fan of the full nappy look.
This model comes in very dull colours which is a con for me but could be a plus for you! These are black, brown and grey.
As reusable nappies, they are fully machine washable, durable and breathable, similar to our number one choice.
In terms of the protective layers, there is the waterproof, leak proof layer outside, the absorbent pad woven inside and the soft jersey layer that comes into contact with your dog’s skin. Our independent expert team say this soft layer reduces chafing and discomfort.
Unlike our first two choices, Luxja offers this model in six fabulous sizes from extra-small to extra-extra-large. Everyone is catered for - hoorah!
If you have a male dog with urinary incontinence, this is the ideal pad for you.
For the ladies, we recommend the CuteBone Dog Nappies.
And no, this is not just because of the insanely impressive range of 13 different style sets that are all incredibly unique and fun. This is ideal for female dogs because it was made with them in mind.
The soft microfibre lining prevents itching and chafing against your dog’s skin. The stretchy elastic wraps around your dog’s legs with ease, giving them a full range of movement. The tail opening has also been redesigned for a better fit.
The CuteBone Dog Nappies being tested by our independent expert team.
As reusable nappies, these are fully machine washable.
Also similar to our number one choice, there are five sizes in total ranging from extra-small to extra-large. You can also wrap the nappy in different ways to ensure the best fit, depending on the unique anatomy of your pup.
The CuteBone range is extremely popular and well reviewed for good reason!
Why Do Dogs Need Nappies?
Nappies have multiple uses at different stages of your dog’s life. Let’s discuss some of the reasons our panel of independent experts loved testing out nappies with their canine companions.
If you have an elderly or otherwise incontinent dog on your hands, I completely feel your pain. My dog, in the last few months of his life, became incontinent due to a tumour around his private parts. Sometimes it is not full incontinence, but just a little dribble of wee every now and again.
The canine equivalent of peeing when you sneeze (can you relate?).
It’s not just old age that causes incontinence. Did you know that certain dog breeds are more likely to dribble?
“Some dog breeds are also prone to urinary incontinence, such as: German Shepherds, Rottweilers, English Springer Spaniels, Doberman Pinschers, Weimaraners, Old English sheepdogs, Dalmatians, Bearded Collies and Collies Boxers” - PetMD (1)
Middle-aged, spayed female dogs are also more likely to develop urinary incontinence because of their low estrogen levels.
Dog incontinence nappies are the perfect solution for your pup if this is what ails them.
Related: The Best Enzyme Cleaner For Dog Urine.
No, I don’t mean caliente heat. I mean menses heat. Say you have a non desexed female dog at home. Perhaps you are breeding her. She will go through her natural menstrual cycle and bleed.
“Most dogs come into heat twice per year, or about every six months, although the interval can vary between breeds and from dog to dog. Small breed dogs may cycle three times per year, while giant breed dogs may only cycle once every 12 months.” - Ryan Llera, DVM & Cheryl Yuill, DVM of VCA Hospitals. (3)
The “estrous cycle” lasts for two to three weeks and they don’t just lose blood. They will also leak discharge during this time and generally be quite sensitive.
Dog period pants are not uncommon tools for breeders. They are period pads for your dog, helping you to keep their bedding fresh which ultimately makes them feel as comfortable as possible.
A dog period isn’t painful for them, but it is… delicate, let’s say. So, making sure they are as comfortable as possible during these couple of weeks is paramount.
Do puppies need nappies? Generally speaking, no they don’t. Nappies should never replace structured gentle dog training (see what I did there?) to effectively housebreak your puppy.
That being said, our research team reminds us that nappies can be useful in the cases of travelling, when you are unsure when you’ll be able to stop or if your dog is quite young and unable to hold it for long.
Puppies can only hold in pee for around 30 minutes, maybe up to an hour. If you are on the motorway with few places to stop over, you may hit an emergency.
Another potentially viable reason to use puppy nappies is because of excitable peeing. I think this is adorable and remember the days when my dog was young. She would be so excited to meet someone new, she would wee herself, just a little bit. (4)
If you know you’ll be in company, or at someone else’s house, and your puppy has a tendency to joyously wee, a puppy nappy may not be such a bad idea.
I am not personally an advocate of puppy nappies simply because I find owners use them instead of house training. House training is not that difficult and is a life skill that your dog must learn. It is far far harder to teach them toilet etiquette in their adult years than in their youth, so pick your poison.
Say your dog has had major surgery and is less able to get up to pee and poop as they used to whilst they heal. Or they could’ve had corrective surgery done for incontinence, which equally takes time to heal and causes some leakage in the interim periods of healing. Doggie nappies are incredibly useful in those scenarios.
Male Dog Nappies vs Female Dog Period Pads
So clearly, we have different nappies here for heat and incontinence. But female dogs can have incontinence too. As we discussed, they may be more prone to incontinence than male dogs.
So why is there a distinction between male nappies and female pads?
It’s all to do with the shape and fit - just like humans.
Consider the male dog anatomy for a moment. Where does a male dog pee from? It’s not exactly directly between the legs like a female. It’s more at the base of the belly, right? Therefore, most male nappies can be wrapped around your dog’s lower tummy and not completely cover them between their legs like traditional nappies. This is why male dog nappies are often referred to as “belly bands”.
"For male dogs, some owners prefer a belly band, which has a lightweight shell that goes around the dog’s midsection. The outer layer is an absorbent liner. Some dog owners buy liners made for the belly band; others use baby diapers or sanitary napkins. Any of these materials are easily disposable.” - Jan Reisen, American Kennel Club (5)
Alternatively, female dogs would always need a full nappy that has space for their legs and tail to fit through.
How To Use Dog Nappies
Step 1: Determine the level of absorbency you need
So how leaky is your dog? This sounds like a silly question. Shouldn’t the highest absorbency be used at all times? Well… not quite. You are probably making your dog needlessly uncomfortable if you go for super-high absorbency and thickness when they don’t really need it.
All that extra padding is extra weight. It’s also restricting movement and increase the chances of chafing. Choose the level of absorbency that makes the most sense for your dog’s needs.
Step 2: Reusable or disposable
This is an interesting one. While it is far more eco-friendly to have reusable cloth dog nappies that can be washed, disposable nappies can have their merits. It depends on the situation you are in. If this is a mainstay in your dog’s life, you may invest in reusable nappies for the comfort and eco factor. However, if this is just a temporary phase during post-op healing, you may opt for disposable ones to save the hassle.
That said, we always advocate for the greener option so the majority of the options we reviewed are reusable. There is a disposable option there too just to cover all bases.
Step 3: The fit
For both males and females, you need to measure your dog’s waist size. Manufacturers often have breed guidelines or indicators like “small” “medium” and “large”, but you should measure your dog’s waist anyway. Average breed guidelines don’t account for weight fluctuations and other abnormalities. Consider your pup as an individual here. You want them to be as comfortable as possible.
Once you have purchased a nappy or belly band, follow the manufacturer’s directions to put them on. A shorthand would be:
Belly bands: Wrap around your dog’s lower belly sitting above the back legs. Ensure their urethra is covered. If an extra absorbent pad is needed on the inside of the band, fit this before you put the belly band on.
Nappies: Allow your dog to step their back legs through the nappy and pull it up over their tail. Pull their tail through the back hole. The top of the nappy should sit well above their tail and around their waist.
Step 4: Change the nappy when needed
Change your dog’s nappy frequently and ensure you wear gloves while doing so. You can use baby wipes to clean your dog between changes, ensuring they feel fresh. Be vigilant of any rashes, inflammation or infections. Though this shouldn’t happen if you change the nappy regularly enough and the material is breathable.
My Final Say
For the perfect all-rounders, our panel of independent experts agree the Petting Is Caring range will cover your bases. They have specific models for both male and female dogs. The size range is impressive, and they are well-reviewed by customers who have used them and loved them.
If you would prefer a disposable option, the Vivi Bear Pet Diapers aren’t just for puppies! Though we nominated them as a great option for puppy nappies, they will work beautifully for any leaky dog out there needing that little bit of extra support.
With either of these options or any of the four we mentioned, you can rest knowing that your dog will feel cleaner and fresher during their day.
As often as possible! Of course, it depends on your dog’s reason for wearing a nappy. If they are incontinent, you need to change them every couple of hours. It may need to be more often if your dog particularly struggles with urinary incontinence. High absorbency pads are best in this case.
If your dog is in heat, their nappy likely needs to be changed less often but you do need to take it off to allow your dog to pee and poop.
- “Urinary Incontinence in Dogs”. Fetch by WebMD. Retrieved May 23, 2023. https://pets.webmd.com/dogs/urinary-incontinence-dogs#1
- Spector, D. August 29, 2012. “What You Need to Know About Spay Incontinence in Female Dogs”. Vet Street. Retrieved May 23, 2023. http://www.vetstreet.com/our-pet-experts/what-you-need-to-know-about-spay-incontinence-in-female-dogs
- Wier, M., Llera, R., & Yuill, C. “Estrous Cycles in Dogs”. VCA Hospitals. Retrieved May 23, 2023. https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/estrus-cycles-in-dogs
- Stregowski, J. September 11, 2021. “How to Stop Submissive or Excitement Peeing in Dogs”. The Spruce Pets. Retrieved May 23, 2023. https://www.thesprucepets.com/fixing-submissive-excitement-urination-1118271
- “Everything You Need to Know About Dog Diapers”. Retrievist by American Kennel Club. Retrieved May 23, 2023. https://retrievist.akc.org/reviews/best-dog-diapers/