Tips for Choosing a Costume for your Dog

We know how adorable your dog will look in his costume. However, before you can pick the right costume for your dog, you should keep some things in mind.
Tips for Choosing a Costume for your Dog
Francisco María García

Written and verified by the lawyer Francisco María García.

Last update: 27 December, 2022

Nowadays, more and more people are dressing their dogs up for special celebrations like Christmas and Halloween. Dog costumes are usually very funny and your family will really enjoy seeing your pet dressed up. But, it’s important to be careful when choosing a costume for your dog.

Tips for choosing the best costume for your dog

To choose the ideal costume for your best friend, you have to keep the following guidelines in mind:

1. Your dog’s comfort always comes first

A costume may look great on your dog, but it won’t work if he’s not comfortable in it. Although part of the goal of dressing him up is to make him look funny or cute, his comfort should always come first.

For that reason, you shouldn’t force your dog to stay in a costume that is bothering him. Also, remember that your dog will need some time to get used to his new garment. As his owner, you should know how to respect and encourage his adaptation to the costume.

2. Always go for good quality materials

When searching the internet or stores, you’ll find costumes of all styles, materials and prices. The better quality garments will be more expensive, but think of them as an investment. 

Ideally, you want to find a dog costume made with resistant materials and hypoallergenic fabrics. It’s also important to look at the seams and the ends. Make sure there’s nothing that will itch or irritate your pet’s fur. 

Two dogs with costumes on.

3. Know your dog’s measurements so you can choose the right size

Yes, this may seem like an obvious tip, but it’s still a key factor when choosing your dog’s costume. Before buying him a garment, make sure you take his measurements carefully and calmly. 

The ideal size will let your dog feel comfortable and he’ll be able to move freely. So, his costume shouldn’t interfere with any of his movements and it shouldn’t be too tight, too long or too big.

4. Avoid costumes with very small decorations or accessories

Many costumes have details, decorations or accessories that add to their design. When choosing a costume for your dog, it’s important to pay special attention to the buttons, jewels and ornaments.

You can buy a costume with these embellishments as long as they’re very tightly secured to the fabric, you don’t want them to come off easily. You shouldn’t buy any garments that have small accessories that your dog might swallow.

On the other hand, remember that very large ornaments can be heavy, making it difficult for your dog to move. Also, if they’re too bright or noisy, your dog might get scared.

How to help your dog adapt to his new costume

Like we said, your dog will need to take some time to get used to his new costume. Especially if he’s not used to wearing any type of garment.

First, you have to understand that this process is slow and gradual. No animal can adapt to something in just a day because change takes time and assimilation. 

Although we should always respect the times and limits of our dogs, you can gently help their adaptation process. But remember, you should never force him to dress up or stay in a costume against his will.

Some dogs with costumes on.

Before you put him in the costume, you should leave it by him so he can smell it and get used to it. Then, you can try putting it on him for the first time and see how he reacts. If he’s uncomfortable, you should take it off immediately and try again another time.

After he starts to feel comfortable in it, you should use positive reinforcement to reward his courage and encourage him to wear his costume. In addition to rewarding him with treats, you can also take the time to play with him.

Care when taking your dog out while wearing his costume

Make sure you do the above steps in a safe and controlled environment like at home; this will ensure your dog’s concentration. The second stage of getting your dog used to his costume is having him wear it out on the street.

Taking your dog out in his costume with pose some challenges, namely other people! Many people will see how cute your dog looks in his costume and will want to come and pet him, especially young children.

These situations can be stressful or scary for your dog, so you should always watch out for them. Make sure your dog is properly socialized and has learned how to properly behave around people and other animals.

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