5 Tips on Choosing a Halloween Costume for your Dog

October 20, 2015

Halloween costumes S. CarterBy Laurie Darroch

Many people love to dress up their canine buddy for Halloween. There are some dos and don’ts to consider, however. Here are a few tips to help you pick the perfect attire for your dog to wear during the spooky celebration.


Not every costume is appropriate for a dog, even if it does fit. Some manufacturers of pet costumes may focus more on designing a cute costume instead of considering the safety issues. Things to look for include good construction and how added features of the costume hang or are attached. The little bells on a jester costume or the balls on the top of a head piece are tempting chew toys that can be ingested and cause injury to your dog.  Anything that can fall off easily or be chewed off is a potential danger.

In addition, loose fitting costumes or ones with extra pieces that hang off can be a safety hazard for walking, running or getting tangled up and caught on something. Vision and mobility can be hampered by the style of some costumes. If you choose one that limits your pup’s function, be aware of that fact. Watch out for closures and how the costume attaches. Your dog isn’t used to wearing clothes and may be tempted to chew on a piece of Velcro, a snap or button.

Your dog can be allergic to the costume as well. The source may be either the fabric of the costume or the chemicals used to clean and make it. Watch out for itching and scratching beyond the annoyed reaction of trying to get the foreign feeling costume off. Watch for rashes, coughing or sneezing. Take the costume off it is making your dog miserable.

Dress Up Time

If your dog is hesitant to wear the costume, try making it a fun experience for theHalloween costumes Donellem. Help them overcome their resistance. Lots of praise and some tasty CANIDAE dog treats may help make dress up time a little easier.


Be sure to get the right size costume and accessories for your dog. Don’t try to squeeze them into something that is not the right fit for them. That can be not only uncomfortable, but painful for your dog if the costume squeezes too tightly, rubs, chafes or scratches them.


Think of a dog costume as a toy of sorts, and one whose use should be supervised. This is a toy beyond their understanding or daily exposure. You need to be around at all times when they are wearing their Halloween costume.


Even if your dog is extremely well behaved and loves dressing up, they should not be running around loose in clothing they can get caught on something, choke on, or pull off and lose or destroy. It’s important to supervise your dog in this new situation. Keep your dog contained in your house or on a leash when out and about.

Some dogs join in the fun willingly and eagerly, but if your dog absolutely hates wearing a costume and completely resists it, don’t force them into doing it. This is something that in reality is more for you than them. You can choose a simple alternative to acknowledge the season, such as a Halloween collar, tag, leash or neck kerchief.

As a responsible pet owner, be sure to keep the above points in mind when choosing the perfect Halloween costume for your dog. Then go and have some hair-raising fun together!

Top photo by S. Carter/Flickr Photo Contest 2015-Halloween 1
Bottom photo by Donelle/Flickr

Read more by Laurie Darroch



We’re celebrating Halloween with a photo contest! Click here to enter,  and you might win 6 months free CANIDAE Pet Food!

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