On the serious side. CMDixon, if you're having a lot of problems with the dog coat pattern, here's a suggestion. This is one of the crochet instructors I subscribe to on Youtube. Granted, you're knitting. But her concept for a dog sweater is ingenious. She uses any size hook/needle and any yarn. You simply measure around the dog's neck and chain or cast on the number of stitches needed to reach this measurement. It's crocheted in a rectangle. You stitch up about an inch or two to go around the neck. You can leave the rest just go over the top of the dog's back or you can chain ties or buttons/loop buttonhole closure on it. I think this could easily be adapted for knitting. I wish I had this pattern last year when I was struggling with all the dog measurements. There are a lot of dog sweater patterns for toy and teacup lap sitters, but none for medium and large dogs.