Planning to dress up your dog as the cutest pumpkin or dinosaur for Halloween? Although this may make for a great for a photo opportunity to snap some precious photos of your beloved pup for a Halloween Instagram post, your dog may not be comfortable remaining in their costume for the entire night of festivities. 

If you decide to dress up your pup, check out the following steps to ensure your dog feels safe, comfortable, and stress-free during the spookiest night of the year: 

1. Choose a comfortable costume that allows your dog to move, see, and breathe normally 

If your dog is trick-or-treating with you and your family, the best costume for them will be one that does not restrict movement, sight, or airways. Costumes that involve a tight head or neck piece or include accessories, such as goggles, may not be the best way to decorate your pup on Halloween. Also, your dog’s ears are very sensitive, it is important to select a costume that will not irritate their ears. 

2. Try on your pup’s costume prior to Halloween. 

Let your dog strut down the runway in a pre-Halloween fashion show to ensure they feel comfortable and content in their costume. Watch for signs of stress or uncomfortableness so you can adjust their costume before Halloween festivities begin.  

3. Your dog’s tags play a key role on Halloween. 

Halloween is unfortunately a popular night for dogs to escape. With people dressed in costumes walking around neighborhoods and frequently ringing your doorbell, your dog may become anxious and try to hide or run away. Keeping your dog leashed up in case of a quick burst of energy or fright will keep your dog by your side all night. In the event your dog gets out of your home or off their leash, it is important to keep their collars on with their tags easily accessible and legible. And make sure the information is accurate and up to date. 

4. Reflective tape and glow sticks are great additions to your dog’s Halloween costume. 

Adding a reflective element to your dog’s costume will help them be seen once the sun goes down. Glowsticks can be added to a dog’s leash to increase their visibility by other trick-or-treaters and cars. 

5. Check for safety hazards caused by your dog’s costume. 

Before your Halloween festivities begin, check your dog’s costume for any pieces that may become loose and become choking hazards. Secondly, be watchful for any areas of tightness caused by the costume which may result in breathing complications if your dog twists and turns at random. Halloween can be an exciting holiday, but costume safety should be considered to ensure there are no problems or injuries. 

 6. Is your dog comfortable in their costume? 

Dogs can experience stress when dressed in a costume which is why it is so important to make sure your dog remains comfortable when dressed up for Halloween. If your dog is showing signs of stress or begins to act in an abnormal way, it will be in your dog’s best interest to remove their costume. A Halloween-themed collar or bandana is a great alternative to keep your dog calm, cool, and in the holiday spirit!  

If Halloween seems to be an extra spooky night for your pup, get them tired out with a day of daycare at Dogtopia! You may also want to consider letting your dog spend the night so they can have a relaxing night free of ghosts and goblins with the most caring staff. Find a location near you to learn more about our daycare and boarding services.