albuquerque halloween dog

Are you so festive at Halloween that you dress up your house, your kids, yourself and your pets? I am too. This is my favorite holiday and I love everything about it. The best way to have fun is to make sure that all members of the family stay safe. Take a look at these do’s and don’ts for dressing your pets up. They may not always be happy about it, but at least they will be safe.

Tips For a Safe Pet Halloween Costume

1. Never Force Your Pet to Wear a Costume: 

Forcing a costume on your pet will only cause unnecessary stress and anxiety. Signs that your pet doesn’t like wearing a costume are: picking at the costume, trying to remove it, biting or chewing it, crying or whining. If you are worried about if they will like it or not, start off by putting on parts of the costume for short periods of time and help them get use to it. Plus taking it off when they show signs of distress will let them know that they can trust you and you aren’t just forcing them into it.

2. Don’t Leave Them Alone: 

Being alone in a costume is unsafe. Even if your pet loves to wear costumes, this is not their natural state of being. It is easy for them to get tangled up in their costume. If they get stuck, this can cause panic and may lead to your pet getting hurt.

3. Are They Able to Move?

You may like a tight and rigid costume that keeps you from moving your head or limbs, but your pet won’t. It is important that your pet be able to move in their costume. When you put on their costume, make sure that your pet can move their legs, head, and neck around easily. Most importantly, make sure that their airway is not obstructed. Make sure they can breath!

4. It’s Not All or Nothing

When you are getting your pet use to their costume you may find that they are comfortable with part of it but not all of it. Pay attention to their body language to see if maybe they are having an issue with part of their costume. Maybe you have a hat or a cape and they are pulling and tugging on it. If your pet is ok with some of the costume but not all of the costume, don’t be afraid to modify it. Just like with small children, sometimes you just have to adjust the costume to fit the being inside it.

5. Can Your Pet See and Hear?

Your pets sight and hearing are important for them to be able to navigate and to be able to determine when they are in danger or not. You never want to give them a costume that restricts their ability to see or hear. This is why full masks and hats can be a bad idea. Also a good idea to get a costume designed for pets, these typically are designed to accommodate their eyes and ears.

6. Hair Dye for Pets

We do not recommend putting any kind of hair dye or temporary hair color on your pets. When your pet bathes themselves, they ingest the hair dye and this can make them sick. In fact, it is best if you resist the urge to put any hair product of any kind on your pet. Hair dye and hair product can cause diarrhea, vomiting, upset stomach, and other issues. Best to give it a big pass.

7. To Glow or Not To Glow?

Halloween is prime glow stick season. Often we cover our kids and ourselves in glowing bracelets and necklaces. For humans this is fine, but for pets this is one that is better to skip. The glow sticks, necklaces, and bracelets, are toxic to your dog if they ingest them. If you pet chews on a glow stick it can make them incredibly sick. In fact, if you think your pet has swallowed any of the contents of a glow stick, get in touch with your vet immediately.

We hope that you are your pet have a wonderful Halloween!

We love to see pets in costumes, so if you need to get your annual vaccinations, bring your pet to our daily walk-in shot clinic in their Halloween costume!