How to Dress Your Dog up For Halloween Safely

by Chris Boraas October 19, 2015

How to Dress Your Dog up For Halloween Safely

Halloween is a fun time for everyone, but it’s an especially sweet holiday for dog owners. With all the cute costume possibilities and DIY options, you can dress up your pup as a superhero, a monster or even a celebrity. But before you get to work dressing your beagle up as Cher, learn how to keep him safe.

While pet lovers usually enjoy dressing up their dogs and cats, the pets might not appreciate it as much. Some dogs don’t mind being decked out in a costume and will even ham it up for the camera, but some of them hate every minute of it. If your dog truly despises being dressed up, don’t make him wear the costume, as fun as it would be for you. You don’t want your pet to be plotting revenge all evening!

If your dog has decided that it’s acceptable to participate in Halloween festivities this year, make sure you dress him in a costume that will keep him safe. Here are our ten canine costume safety tips:

Watch for choking hazards. Ribbons and bow ties around your dog’s neck can get stuck. Watch out for anything that could choke your pet if it came loose.

Don’t limit your dog’s movement or senses. Make sure your pup can get around well even when he’s dressed up, and never restrict the ability to breathe, bark, eat or drink water.

Keep the dog’s head free. Don’t let a big hat cover his eyes or allow anything to hit him in the face when he walks.

If your dog hates being dressed up but you’d love him to have a costume, you can get creative with a crazy collar or nontoxic pup-safe hair paint.

Make sure the costume isn’t too tight. You don’t want your dog to feel uncomfortable.

Don’t pick a costume that’s too heavy—your dog will get exhausted easily or could overheat.

Make sure your dog’s ID tag shows through his costume. If he gets spooked and runs away, your neighbors will be able to help him come home.

Have a practice run (or two). The day before Halloween, put your pup in his costume and let him get used to it.

Even better: consider having a pre-Halloween dress up day for the dog and take a series of photos. Then let him relax on Halloween day while you tend to trick or treaters.

Remember, your dog will find a way to communicate his feelings on being dressed up. Don’t force it, but if he’ll allow it, make this a Halloween to remember.

Chris Boraas
Chris Boraas