Halloween is my favorite holiday.
Sure, I love Thanksgiving because I get to eat amazing food. I love Christmas because there is something about the Christmas spirit that makes everything better. And, I love Easter because the candy is phenomenal.
But, I have always loved the ability to be someone or something else for a day. I remember learning makeup and working with latex (think scars, wounds, and horror) when I was in high school.
There is something freeing about donning an outfit and makeup and becoming someone or something I have always wanted to be. For instance, I am very introverted, but add some really cool cat makeup and tights, and I transform into an outgoing cheetah for a day. In school, my friends would line up for me to do their makeup! And, I could do my makeup so well that I could become incognito for the day. This was impressive considering I was born and raised in a small town in Wyoming, where everyone knew everyone! Thankfully, I grew up to be a super cool dog trainer who has taken my craft all over the United States, while building my experience and resume.
Who doesn’t love Halloween and a good Halloween party? I look forward to Halloween and Halloween parties all year. I know you want to win the award for best dressed, or most scary too! Plus it is a bonus to see how creative your friends are when left to their own devices. In my group of friends, we are a very competitive group. Last year, best costume went to a super scary clown with amazing makeup. This year, one of my male friends is hoping to win by being the prettiest “female” nurse. Going in drag for a guy is always a crowd pleaser.
Halloween and Your Pets
I will, however, admit that not all pets enjoy Halloween.
People who don’t look like people can be overwhelming and scary to man’s best friend! If your dog has any fear issues or shows any fears toward things or people in adorable or scary outfits or anything in their environment on Halloween night; give him the night off! My dog’s prefer their crates over sporting awesome dog costumes or greeting people on all hallow’s eve. After all, my dogs come from very protective breeds, and they have a difficult time discerning a real threat when people are acting threatening around them. There is no shame in allowing your dog to skip the night’s festivities! If I gave my dogs the option, my Belgian Malinois would like to be the Big Bad Wolf, while my Dutch Shepherd tagged along as Little Red Riding Hood. Or I could see her choosing a furry Wonder Woman while he chose a Wolverine theme! I could probably do some sewing doggy style for a good photo opportunity or a little social media exposure. After all, they are cute and adorable!
And, if you have a fearful dog, Halloween night and Halloween parties where people are dressed in scary garb can be terrifying. Even if he might enjoy dressing up for a pet Halloween costume party, or photo op he might prefer chilling in his crate or quiet part of the home with a bone rather than being scared that humans can transform into things that don’t resemble humans.
Also recognize when your dog has had enough! Most dogs have a time limit on Halloween night, before they become overstimulated. I remember being a young trainer and socializing a young Service Dog candidate at “Boo at the Zoo”. She started out handling the situation like a champ. She greeted every human and child with a wagging tail and happy countenance. After an hour or so she began to nibble and “corn cob” on children in fleece or soft costumes. Soft costumes had started to look like live, giant fuzzy dog toys. I had to recognize that this was a product of some stress, over stimulation and tiredness. I needed to get her out of that environment before she began to nibble harder. Don’t worry! She made a wonderful Service Dog, but certain environments can be challenging for even the best socialized pet.
31 million people intend to dress their pet up this year for Halloween! That is a big number! Thankfully, large retail companies have noticed this trend and did their best to provide quality costumes for pets of all ages and sizes.
Halloween pet parades have also made an appearance in many towns across America. We love cute kids and costumes; why not add our pets into the mix?
My favorite video on social media right now involves a cute small dog in a spider costume. As the pooch runs with such happiness and animation, he truly looks like a giant, hideous, terrifying spider. Arachnophobics everywhere are screaming in horror until they realize that within this spider costume lies the cutest, happiest dog on earth!
Want to add a little more cuteness to your costume and theme this year? Why not add a theme that includes your pooch?
Matching Halloween costumes for dogs and owners, and specific themes can be that little edge to help you win the costume contest or stand out during the Halloween dog parade.
I realize most people don’t have enough time in their day to worry about human costume ideas, much less cute dog costume ideas, so we are here to help! Why stress over your costume or your dog’s costume when we can provide you with some fun ideas this holiday season.
Even if you are just dressing your pet for “Halloween pictures” (perfectly acceptable reason to get your pet dressed up this season) we can help you find something that will reflect yours and your dog’s temperament and style! Or we can just help you find something fun and totally adorable. Your pooch will be the belle of any ball (even if you make him look like a tennis ball)!
There is no limit to pet costume ideas or funny dog costumes!
Nothing is more tantalizing than becoming you and your pooch’s favorite food for the night.
Let your dog be the hot dog, and you can be the ketchup, or you can be hot dog and your dog can be a beer!
How about ketchup and mustard? What could be a better match than ketchup and mustard? Got a third dog? Let him be the hot dog or hamburger! Got numerous dogs? The sky is the limit here, onions, pickles and all your favorite BBQ toppings or side dishes.
Transform your pudgy pooch into a Hersey’s kiss (just some stuffing and tin foil), while you become an M&M. Hershey’s kisses and hugs is also a fun idea you can explore.
Use some string, and you can be spaghetti while you make your dog a meatball!
A slice of pizza and a cold beer could be a perfect costume combination as well.
Want something cute and easy? Use some cardboard to fashion your pet into a wine bottle while you hold a large wine glass!
I personally love food and snacks, so in my book you can never go wrong with your favorite food or snack food. Plus Foods are easily reproduced and very recognizable.
Cartoons can be another great untapped idea.
Mighty Mouse was my favorite underdog when I was a kid. Not to mention “Under Dog”!
Felix the Cat, could let your dog “cross dress” for the Night!
Scoobie Doo is always a great “go to”.
Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Pluto, and other Disney Characters can also be something that is timeless and well recognized!
Got a wild little dog? Why not try Tazmanian Devil, Bugs Bunny and Coyote!
Everyone likes a theme that can take them back to their childhood.
Famous duos are also adorable costume ideas.
How about Mutt and Jeff?
What about Han Solo and Chewbaca?
Or become your favorite musical duo. Did you and your friends grow up in the 90’s? Axl Rose and Slash is another crowd pleaser.
Got a Great Dane? Transform him into a horse, and you can don a cowboy hat and become a cowboy for the night.
Have a dog with a long snout and furry coat? Why not dress him up as the “Big Bad Wolf” while you become “Red Riding Hood”?
Hot glue some cotton balls together on a t-shirt to make your dog into a sheep, while you transform into Little Bo Peep.
Pet costumes for dogs can be easy to make if you have some simple supplies like cardboard, tin foil, hot glue guns, or even super glue can be helpful. You can even sew doggy style if you have a little time and inclination.
Like ideas with other animals? A guinea pig, hamster or other pocket pet would be adorable.
Charlotte’s Web is one of my favorite books. Make a spider dog costume and pig costume and see if anyone recognizes your theme! I think this could be the perfect costume to win any costume contest!
Do you like reading? Show your friends, family and neighbors that you enjoy reading by transforming your dog into Harry Potter, or Matilda. Dr. Seuss books always provide fun and adorable pet costume ideas! Who can resist Fox in Socks, Cat in the Hat, the Grinch?
Star wars is also a popular theme. A Yoda dog costume with Luke Sky Walker could be fun too! Especially if you have a small dog, like a French Bulldog. Star Wars is a classic idea that will be easily recognized by young and old.
There are tons of options when it comes to Star Wars! Want ideas? Have a Star Wars movie-a-thon before choosing your costume this year.
Remember beenie babies? There were so many varieties and looks, use google and get your glue gun ready!
How about Humpty Dumpty or other Mother Goose themes? Jack and Jill, Three Blind Mice, Ba Ba Black Sheep or the Woman in the shoe could be the kind of ideas that set your dog apart because not everyone thinks of these gems when making Pet Halloween Costumes! Your pooch deserves that extra edge.
Let your dog go as Bumble Bee while you go as another transformer. Or let your dog go as “a” bumble bee and you go as a flower!
All in all, human costumes are fairly easy, but coming up with matching costumes will be adorable and more fun for everyone involved.
Imagine. Couples costumes are a hit and a theme everywhere. Why not be your dog’s other half for the night!
This can help those of us who are single, or who have single friends to have that adorable partner for the night. After all, your pet can be your favorite partner in life too!
With this much cuteness, you are going to want to throw your own Halloween dog party!
Honestly, the ideas are limitless! Come up with your own great plan and have fun with your dog this holiday season!
What is your the favorite pet costume for dogs that you have seen?
What is your favorite cute or funny dog costume?
And what is the most “terrifyingly adorable” pet outfit that you have seen?
Feel free to share your experiences, ideas, pictures and recommendations in the comments below to help other pet owners find the perfect idea or costume for themselves and their cherished pet.
I have been a professional dog trainer and pet sitter for over 20 years. I am a Certified Professional Dog Trainer, through the international Certification Counsel of Professional Dog Trainers. I have trained and worked with police, Schutzhund and personal protection dogs. I trained Assistance Dogs in a men’s prison and ran my own nonprofit organization to take adult dogs from shelters and to train them to assist children and adults with disabilities, at no charge to my clients. My nonprofit organization and I were nominated for several awards of merit and even made the front page of the Denver Post. I was a veterinary technician for many years, where I learned about all aspects of health and preventative medicine. I have trained and worked with exotic animals and cheetahs. I introduced a temperament testing program in my local shelter and sat on the board of directors. I volunteered with my dog “Mr. Snitch” and helped local children learn to read. I have attained obedience titles and several blue ribbons. I am constantly in search of ways to continue my education and excellence when it comes to animals, their behavior and their health.