BaxterBoo Blog
October 9, 2017

Halloween Costume Comfort, Safety, and Selections for Your Dog

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Halloween is just around the corner. It’s almost time for pumpkins, stockpiled candy, and costumes. As you begin the annual tradition of choosing a great costume, there’s a pretty good chance that you (along with many other dog owners) will want to include your furry pal in the fun. Just remember that if you aren’t careful, your dog may be so uncomfortable or unsafe in the costume that this holiday will be anything but fun. Take a look at some tips for selecting a safe and comfortable costume for your dog and then check out a list of favorite costume ideas.





The two most important things to consider are safety and comfort. How can you tell if your dog’s costume is safe? Pay close attention to any parts that may become choking hazards. Watch out for loose ties or elastic areas that might get wrapped around your dog’s neck. Avoid costumes with parts that might cover your pup’s nose or mouth. You can feel more comfortable about safety if you let your pet wear the costume for several minutes under your close observation.




An important step in understanding whether a costume is appropriate for your dog is learning to recognize the signs that your pup isn’t happy in the costume. If, for example, you slip your dog into a costume and receive a few kisses before your dog’s attention turns to dinner, you’ve probably picked a great costume. On the other hand, if your furry friend is acting uncomfortable, whining, pawing at the costume, panting heavily, or refusing to move, there may be some discomfort involved. Feel around the costume and your dog to be sure there aren’t any sharp bits poking into the skin or tight areas causing pain. You may find that loosening a tie is all it takes to help Fido adjust to holiday wear. If this doesn’t work, you can either find another costume or try to help your dog feel more comfortable with a costume. 




After ensuring safety and comfort, one of the first things to do is to take your dog’s measurements to ensure a great fit. The best tool for this is the same measuring tape you use when taking your own measurements. You may not need to take all of the following measurements; just be sure to get the right measurements for the costume of your choice. Once you’ve measured, use your findings to compare with the sizes listed on the packaging or product description and be sure to add about an inch, so there is plenty of room for your dog’s fur. It is better to purchase a costume that is a little big than to get one that is too small.


  • Chest: Measure from the top of the back under the belly, just behind the front legs, and back to your starting point.
  • Neck: Continue as you measured for the chest, usually where a collar sits comfortably.
  • Head: This measurement goes from the spot just about the eyes to the back of the skull.
  • Legs: Most measurements for legs are based on length.
  • Body Length: Start at the back of the neck, where a collar sits comfortably, and end at the base of the tail, not the tip.





If you only plan to put your dog into costume for one party, the materials and stitching of the outfit probably don’t matter too much. However, if your dog is very active and you want to get an entire holiday season out of the costume, you’ll want to be sure you’ve invested in quality materials and workmanship. In this case, you’ll probably also want to be sure that the openings for the neck and legs are big enough for easy moving. Poorly made costumes are often constructed out of cheap materials and are likely to fall to pieces when your dog moves. Finally, some inexpensive materials can cause itching, sneezing, and other allergic responses.


Train Your Dog to Wear Costumes


Even if you don’t plan to put your dog in a themed costume to complete your family’s Halloween getup, it’s a good idea to help your pup feel comfortable in coats and other clothing. This can be beneficial during cold or wet weather. There are a few steps you can take to help your furry best friend feel comfortable in an outfit.


  • Start Young: Puppies are more likely to take to new experiences than older dogs. The best tip for helping your dog feel comfortable in costume is to start young. If it’s too late for this step, just focus on making slow progress.
  • One Thing at a Time: The next step to easing your pet into a costume is to start with one or two accessories, such as a hat or scarf. Begin with just a few minutes and gradually increase the length of time. When your dog is comfortable with accessories, move onto a shirt or jacket, and so on.
  • Keep Things Positive: As with many learning experiences, rewards, positive attention, and patience go a long way.



With the basics covered, it’s time to cover some holiday costume favorites!


Category One: Traditional Favorites


Every year when Halloween rolls around, you’re sure to spot at least a few cowboys, pumpkins, and ghosts. Dress your little boy or girl dog in a skeleton or clown outfit. Keep things simple with a pumpkin tutu or get a little more into costumes with the pirate girl costume, headdress included. The favorite in this category just might be the colorful witch dog costume.


Category Two: Animal Costumes


It isn’t unusual for little girls and boys to dress up like cats and dogs for the holiday. With such a wide selection of costumes for your pup, you may feel the same level of excitement about animal costumes. Check out some super cute skunk, lobster, bunny, and dino costumes. Top pick goes to the glamorous peacock dog costume.


Category Three: Superhero Themes


Are you a fan of Wonder Woman, Superman, or the Ninja Turtles? Your big or little dog will look fantastic in a full-on padded Incredible Hulk costume with hat or a simple cape for the less compliant pooch. Don’t miss the adorable Superhero Dog Costume – Red Spider Dog. Keep your hero’s identity hidden with this category favorite!


Category Four: Fairy Tale Outfits


Are you looking for something appropriate for your little prince or princess? Take a look at a Red Riding Hood outfit, garden gnome hat, ruby red King’s Crown, pixie wings, or unicorn dog costume. What’s your favorite? It may be a hard tie between the iridescent mermaid and the Kanine King costume.


Category Five: TV and Movie Characters


What was your favorite movie of the year? There’s a good chance you’ll find a costume to match. You’ll find character costumes from a wide range of favorites, including a ghost-hunting costume, Freddy Krueger costume, and your favorite Vulcan. You may love the walking Minion costume.



What’s in store for your favorite dog this Halloween?

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This entry was posted by Shauna.

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