How to Get Your Cat or Dog into a Costume
Tips for a Pet that Doesn't Want to Get Dressed for Halloween
Kids love to dress up for Halloween and so do more than a few adults but our pets are not always quite so willing to don a costume as we might want them to be.
A cat or dog can look adorable all dressed up for this spooktacular event but some just may not have the personality to want to do it. Our furry friends can put up one heck of an argument when dressing up isn't something they want to do.
It's the masquerade which is a major factor in what makes this holiday so much fun. So what can you do? You can cajole, bribe, and coax, but convincing your pet to don that garb is still going to wind up being a process of give and take between the two of you.
The point is to keep this holiday fun for everyone. To make things just a wee bit easier the following tips may help convince your four legged friend to want to dress up for Halloween.
It's Always Easier to Get Them to do Something They Want to do
One of the best ways to get your pet to agree to put on a Halloween costume is to make sure that the costume suits your pet.
Dogs are generally a little more willing to please their masters than are cats which means that puppies are often much easier to clothe. For this reason there are also more choices in available costumes for them.
It's important to note that when you are selecting a costume for your dog there are still some basic rules to keep in mind to insure that he/she is as comfortable as possible in their selected clothing.
It's very important to remember that dogs do not sweat like we do so avoid hot costumes that could overheat your puppy. Also do not purchase a full body costume or try to use small sized people clothing on your pet. People clothing is for people not pets.
Pets are designed a little differently than humans and as such have a few very different needs. Instead of a full body suit find a costume that keeps the back and underside of the garment open for your pet's toilet convenience. Many pet costumes tie around the body and this conveniently leaves those all important locations open for when your pet has to go potty. It's an important design feature to keep in mind.
Don't Overload the Clothing
They Can't Sweat Out Heat Like You and I do
Simple costumes are generally best. Cloth shoes are fine for your pup and are best if they have an elastic fit, just take a moment to insure that the elastic is not too tight. Also insure that the shoes are not loose enough to tangled up on your pet or to easily fall off the feet.
Hats held on with an elastic are generally an acceptable accessory for a dog or cat so long as they are not restrictive, too tight, or too loose. For the safety of your dog try not to put a mask on your pet's face. The mask could interfere with your pet's vision or breathing.
Because your pet is very much like a child and is not always aware of what may be in his best interests, it is up to you to insure his safety on Halloween. Always keep your pet's safety as the final factor in selecting a costume for them.
Insure that the costume does not contain sharp pins or small buttons that he might chew or swallow. Check the neckline to insure that he or she can breathe easily. Add a reflective strip or flashing light to his costume so that he is visible to motorists in the dark.
DIY Pet Costume? You Can do it!
With a Little Coaxing Your Dog Will Generally Comply
Dogs really do want to please their owner so with a lot of love and a comfortable costume you can usually encourage your puppy into a Halloween costume without too much difficulty. Where pets are concerned patience works much better than force.
Begin training your pet to wear the costume well before the Halloween season arrives. Do not entirely dress your pet on the first attempt but instead put on one piece of the costume for a very brief period.
As soon as this piece of clothing is on your puppy reward your pet with a lot of love, praise, and edible treats. In a few hours or the next day repeat this process. Continue this pattern until you can begin dressing your pet in complete costume and leaving the costume on for longer periods of time.
Do not leave your pet for long or extended periods in the costume and if your pet is anxious about being in it, reduce the amount of clothing involved. A simple hat, skirt, bow tie or bandana combination can be very cute. As your pet grows used to the feeling of clothes on him / her you may be able on future holidays to further increase the complexity of the costume.
Cats Are Often Not Too Eager to Wear Any Type of Clothing
Fluffy may not be quite as easy to persuade as her canine counterpart would be. Cats are more concerned with their own comfort than they are with your wishes.
If what you want from your cat sounds like something that might interfere with her comfort then be prepared for a battle.
Unless you have a very docile kitty keep her costume simple. A Jester or clown themed collar, black bow tie, or small upper body shirt are quite suitable kitty Halloween attire. Often a simple accessory can be attached to his/her collar to give kitty a unique dress.
If you are not very crafty with a needle and thread then Amazon may be the perfect place to search for Halloween costume ideas for your pet. Keep your kitty's comfort uppermost in mind when selecting a Halloween costume for your fancy feline. She's finicky and will definitely let you know if an article of clothing is not to her tastes.
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