Guild of Shepherds & Collies

Comfortable in Costumes

Candy corn and skulls. Pumpkins and ghosts. Goblins, ghouls, and witches.

Pet Halloween Costume

Fall is in the air and that also means Halloween is getting closer (next week, in fact!). With Halloween just around the corner, it means that many pet parents will be buying a variety of costumes and dressing up their pets. It pains me to see animals looking miserable in the photos of them all dressed up, though I love cute photos of pets of any species happily sporting their holiday attire. People even have their guinea pigs and iguanas getting in the Halloween spirit!

Having to wear a costume does not have to be an ordeal for a pet. Getting your pet used to wearing the costume a little at a time and well before you plan to debut the outfit for Trick or Treating -- or a holiday event -- can make a world of difference.

Once your pet is comfortable, the sky's the limit! Have fun adding hats, various props, or any other items to complete the costume.


Here are a couple of ways that you can make your pet more comfortable:

  • Practice by putting coats, shirts, harnesses, or other props on your pet. Start out by having your pet wearing it only for a very short period of time. From there, you can work up to leaving it on longer.
  • Make sure to use lots of yummy treats and food so your pet associates wearing the outfit with something pleasant.
  • Praise your pet enthusiastically (if your pet enjoys that kind of praise) and let him or her know how wonderful you think they are for putting on the attire.

If your pet is absolutely terrified of costumes, it may take more time for him or her to become acclimated and comfortable enough to wear the outfit. And if that is definitely out of the question, then please don't force your pet to put up with wearing a costume.

Instead, here are some back-up ideas of how you can celebrate the holiday season together:

  • Bake some animal-friendly Halloween themed treats.
  • Decorate the house.
  • Buy a Halloween collar with pumpkins or candy corn or a Halloween lead to accessorize - these will help spruce up your pet for the occasion.


There are plenty of fun opportunities for pets to celebrate Halloween and show their spirit. There are events with costume contests, fun photo booths at pet stores, and even online events where you can share your adorable pets with the world. Just make sure your pet is having as much fun as you are.

What do you think about dressing up pets for Halloween? Do you dress up your pet?

Article By:
Tiffany Hughes

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