Woman wearing headlamp walking dog at night

The Best Way to Stay Visible When Walking Your Dog in the Dark

Brittany Randolph

If you’re like many, your before- and after-work walk with your dog is not only essential for your pooch to stretch their legs and relieve themselves, but can also be an important part of your daily routine, too. Brisk walks in the morning can really wake you up and help you decompress in the evening.

As the days get shorter and darker, so does the opportunity to walk your dog when it’s light outside. In fact, nearly every part of the country is dark between 6 pm – 6 am this time of year. Statistically, this is when the highest rates of pedestrian accidents occur.

So it’s important for you and pup to be seen! Our number one tip for dog visibility in the dark is to outfit them in high-quality, high-visibility gear.

For optimum dog visibility, don’t skimp on quality

At Bow Wow Labs, we recommend that you use a dog vest made with 3M Scotchlite™ retro reflective enhanced 360° visibility tape. While there are other HiVis (High Visibility) products out there, products made with this tape help drivers see your dog from up to a whopping 1,000 feet away! Longer distance visibility gives drivers longer reaction time to slow down. 

A full dog vest is always best

Dog wearing safety vest chasing ball across the street in front of a car

While you might already have your dog outfitted in a reflective collar, it’s important to remember that drivers coming from the rear can’t see the reflective collar, especially if your dog’s nose is low to the ground sniffing around. Therefore, it’s a good idea to invest in the full vest. 

And last but not least, make sure that you’re seen, too! A report out in early 2019* found that pedestrian deaths are at a 28-year high, due to the fact that more people are driving with smartphones, and there are more larger cars and trucks on the road. And according to People Powered Movement, a lack of pedestrian visibility is to blame for the higher rate of accidents at night and early morning. So stay safe out there and dress yourself and your pup in some HiVis wear!

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