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By Wunderlabel on 12/06/2021

Knitted Dog Jumper

Knitted Dog Jumper: Free Tutorial for Beginners

Would you like to make a knitted dog jumper? Then you've come to the right place! This eye-catching knit dog sweater with pom poms fits small dog breeds and is perfect for the Christmas season. 
Have you already knitted your Ugly Christmas Sweater or are you planning an Ugly Christmas sweater party? Make sure that your dog is included with a matching outfit. With our dog sweater knitting pattern you can knit your four-legged friend a fun dog jumper. 
It will protect your dog from the cold and stand out with its festive colours. Even beginners will be able to make this Christmas dog jumper for  Chihuahuas as it only involves simple knitting and purling.  

Is the dog jumper knitting pattern the same for male and female dogs? 

You might have a few questions before starting on your knitted dog jumper. For example, whether there is a difference between dog sweaters for male and female dogs.
The basics for both are the same but a sweater for male dogs needs a deeper belly section, i.e. the stitches of the belly section are bound off earlier.

What type of yarn should you buy for a knit dog sweater?

When choosing the yarn for your dog's jumper, there are a few important points to consider. Real virgin wool is very warm and suitable for small dog breeds that are particularly sensitive to cold, while synthetic yarn is very soft and inexpensive. Since the knitted dog jumper should last through numerous washes without losing its shape, sock wool is an optimal choice. It is usually made from a mixture of virgin wool and polyacrylic. This composition ensures that the dog sweater is warm, durable and easy to care for.

How much yarn will you need for a small dog jumper?

The amount of yarn needed depends not only on the size of the dog, but also on the type of wool, needle size and knitting technique. As a rule, a smooth knitted jumper for small breeds or puppies requires approx. 100 g. of wool. Note that knitting techniques such as rib or cable knit use significantly more yarn.

How do you calculate the amount of stitches needed for your dog jumper? 

You can adapt the dog jumper to your own dog if you calculate the stitches correctly. To do this you need to: 1) measure the dog (neck circumference; back length, belly length, chest circumference); 2) make a 10 x 10 cm knitting pattern ; 3) count the stitches and the rows; 4) divide the number of stitches by 10 to get a per centimetre coefficient; 5) multiply the per centimetre coefficient by the desired measurement in centimetres. 

You will need the following for a small knitted dog jumper:


It is important to measure the dog properly and check the gauge / tension so that the jumper fits perfectly. In our case the back length is 29 cm, the belly part 22 cm, and the chest circumference 36 cm. A knitted piece of 10 x 10 cm contains 20 stitches and 30 rows.

Knitting dog sweaters for beginners: Step by step 

This knitted dog jumper is worked from the top to the bottom. This pattern is for knitting a male dog sweater. 

Step 1. Cast on 56 stitches.

Step 2. Distribute the stitches evenly over the 4 needles creating a closed square. 

Knitted Dog Jumper

Step 3. Knit 5 - 6 cm in a rib pattern to make the collar.

Knitted Dog Jumper

Step 4.  Distribute the stitches for the raglan knit:

  • 28 st – Back
  • 6 st – Sleeve
  • 16 st – Belly
  • 6 st – Sleeve

Knitted Dog Jumper

The raglan increases are marked red in the picture. Here we increase new stitches in every second row. We do this from both sides of the first and last stitches of the sleeves, but we don't pick up any new stitches for the belly part: Raglan line A gets new stitches only on the left, raglan line D gets new stitches only on the right, raglan lines B and C get new stitches from both sides. Continue knitting this way until the back piece reaches 48 stitches, the sleeves 24 stitches each and the belly piece has 16 stitches left.

Step 5. Place the stitches of the leg opening on a stitch holder, pick up 4 additional stitches, knit the stitches of the back piece, place the stitches of the leg opening on a stitch holder, pick up 4 additional stitches. Now there are 72 stitches on the needles.

Knitted Dog Jumper

Step 6. Knit 3 cm in the round.
Step 7. Knit 2 stitches together from each side of the belly piece.  Knit 4 rounds and repeat. Knit another 4 - 6 rounds (adjust the length to your own dog!).
Step 8. Knit the last 2 cm of the belly section in a rib pattern so that the jumper fits snugly. Cast off the belly piece.

Knitted Dog Jumper

Step 9. You can no longer knit in rounds and must instead turn the knit after each row. Finish the rest with a rib pattern (6-7 cm). Adapt the length to your dog!

Step 10. Slip the stitches around the leg openings from the stitch holder back onto the needle, cast on the extra 4 stitches between the pieces. Knit 1-2 cm rib pattern in the round, then cast off the stitches.

The jumper is basically finished, but a single-coloured jumper is boring and we want to make it much more fun! There are many ways to do this. We suggest you brighten up the jumper with colourful pompoms. Maybe you could even make an Ugly Christmas Sweater with pompoms for yourself to match your pup!

How to craft pom poms without a pom pom maker

If you don’t have a pompom making tool then just craft them yourself. 
Make 2 identical rings out of cardboard. 

Knitted Dog Jumper

Place the rings on top of each other and wrap the yarn around them. 

Knitted Dog Jumper

Put your scissors between the rings and cut the yarn.

Knitted Dog Jumper

Place a thread in between and tie a tight knot. Cut the rings so that you can pull them off. Done!

Knitted Dog Jumper

The number and the colours of the pompoms are completely up to you.

Knitted Dog Jumper

Finish your knitted dog jumper off with a personalised name tag. 

Knitted Dog Jumper

If you find it too awkward to knit the whole piece in the round just split the belly stitches in half and work back and forth (knit one row, purl the next and so on). The halves can then be sewn together.

Your fun Christmas dog sweater is finished and ready to be shown off!

Don't miss these blog posts from Wunderlabel:

Sew a Personalised Dog Bandana

Ugly Christmas Sweater - 8 Ideas with Knitting Patterns

How to Knit Socks

Knitting Newborn Swaddle Blankets

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