Seeing all those adorable pictures of dogs dressed up for Halloween is sure to make you want to get your pet looking festive, too. However, many dogs dislike wearing costumes, and you may find them uncooperative on the night of your Halloween party.
Thankfully, there are ways to get your pooch in a spooky mood before the big night. Here are our tips for how to put your dog in a costume.
It’s All About Scent
One reason your dog is probably hesitant to wear its costume is because of the way it smells. Your dog has a much more sensitive nose than you, meaning it can smell the weird plastic scent of pet costumes much more intensely. They also won’t like wearing the costume because it doesn’t smell like them.
To fix this problem, leave the costume out somewhere your dog can smell it and get used to it for a few days before you try to put it on them. Let them roll around on it to make it smell familiar.
Start Out Slowly
The next trick to putting your dog in a costume is to avoid doing it all at once. Start with just a sleeve or a hat, so they get an idea of what the costume is and how it feels on their fur. Don’t leave them in the ensemble—just put their arm in the sleeve, then take it back out. Repeat this process a few times.
Use Treats and Praise
While introducing your dog to the costume, give them plenty of praise for putting on the costume. After you’ve done this a few times, reward them with a treat, so they begin to associate good things with the costume. When they’re ready, you can put the whole costume on and let them wear it around, so they’ve fully adjusted before the big night.
Is Your Dog Not a Party Animal?
Halloween parties are just too much excitement for some dogs. There may be too many strangers and smells around for them to feel safe, plus there’s the danger that they might accidentally eat chocolate.
If your dog isn’t a party animal, it may feel safer staying the night with a professional dog boarder. Afterward, you can take them to the park wearing their costume for a calmer Halloween experience.