Three Tips for Dressing Up Your Pet for Halloween

Thursday, October 24, 2013 - 11:15am
Dog Wearing a Halloween Costume

Are you ready? Halloween is just a week away. As most pet parents scramble to put the finishing touches on their own costumes, some are scrounging for the cutest or scariest attire they can find for their pets, too. But hold on—are Halloween costumes really okay for our furry friends?

It depends, say experts. Our vets and behaviorists weighed in and said putting your pet in costume is okay as long as you’re certain he’s comfortable in his holiday gear.

If you decide to have your pet wear a costume, here are three helpful tips to keep in mind:

Your pet’s Halloween garb shouldn’t constrict his movement or hearing, or impede his ability to breathe, bark or meow. Be sure to try on costumes well in advance—and if your furry friend seems distressed, try switching to his birthday suit.

Dog Wearing a Halloween CostumeExamine your pet’s costume and make sure it doesn’t have any small, dangling or easily chewed-off pieces that he could choke on. Also, ill-fitting outfits can get caught on external objects or your pet, leading to injury.

Make sure your dog or cat has proper identification on underneath that cute costume. If for any reason your pet escapes and becomes lost during Halloween festivities, tags or a microchip can be a lifesaver.

Are you planning to dress up your pet for Halloween? Let us know in the comment—and be sure to tag us @ASPCA if you upload any pics of your festive friend to Twitter or Instagram.

For more holiday advice, check out our expert Halloween Safety Tips.

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I 1) AGREE 2) AGREE 3) AGREE !!!


My dogs are little and our area is cold during Halloween. If I want to take one of the out I'd have to put a sweater on them anyway. Why not (as long as you follow the tips in the article) make it something cute to fit with Halloween that can also keep them warm?

Patty Bowers

Making pets wear costumes that are dangerous and stupid for our "entertainment" is selfish and mean. I would NEVER do this to an animal!


And what about costumes that are NOT dangerous, as many of them are not? Or what about dogs that go out trick-or-treating in cold weather? If they are a dog that would need a sweater anyway, why not make it something festive?


Agreed. I don't want my furry friends to look stupid. I don't put clothes or costumes on them. They don't even have a say in the matter

my dog loves sw...

Only, the dogs DO have a say in the matter. If they don't want to wear it, they will darn sure let you know. If they don't mind, or in some cases even enjoy / like it, then why not put them in a costume?




I agree with Cathy. No On No to pet wearing costumes. Animals were not meant to wear clothes of any kind. They are predators not furry children! Sorry people.


Does that include my hairless chinese cresteds when they need to be pottied outdoors in the frigid winter temperatures? I think we can all agree as animal lovers and speakers on their behalf it would be cruel to NOT put a sweater on them...If I happen to find a sweater that has some sort of festive message or print what does it matter to you?


I m very deeply sorry about that. Little dogs > like Hairless Chinese Crested need something warm, yet less restricking (? on spelling). I seen big dogs w/ hankerchifes (? spelling) on. I am basically referring to silly dog and cat holiday; Halloween~ Thanksgiving or Christmas costumes. Once again I apologize. =( // =)