Dog wearing sunglasses and Elvis wigIt’s our favorite time of year here at Hallsville Veterinary Hospital – pet costume season! For us, the crisp air and changing leaves conjure up images of adorable pets showing off their fabulous costumes during the annual Hallsville pet costume contest at the Western Days festival.

Whether you are entering your furry ball of joy in our costume contest this year or plan to take your pet out trick-or-treating (or both!), take a moment to review our pet costume safety tips ahead of time.

All Dressed Up?

Before you pay top dollar for that adorable cheerleader skirt and pom-poms for your labradoodle, or spend hours creating a Pinterest-worthy taco costume for your tabby, it’s important to keep your pet’s comfort in mind.

Plenty of pets don’t mind wearing the occasional costume and love the attention they receive from it, but for many, wearing clothes is just intolerable. Never force a pet to wear garments if he or she is miserable.

Try your pet’s costume on him or her before you commit to it and let his or her body language tell you if a costume is appropriate or not. Signs your pet is not a good candidate for a Halloween costume include:

  • Tucked tail
  • Hunched back
  • Folded ears
  • Eyes rolling back or looking to the side
  • Running away to hide, or refusal to move from one spot
  • Scratching or clawing at parts of the costume

Oftentimes, a simple, festive bandana tied around the collar is a fun way to celebrate the season, and most pets won’t even notice it.

Pet Costume Safety 101

As much as we love seeing pets in costumes, keeping pets safe is always our top priority. Adhering to pet costume safety is an absolute must before you and your four-legged princess or superhero leave the house.

It’s time to find your pet a new costume if:

  • Your pet is having trouble sitting or lying down, getting up from a down position, or otherwise moving about freely and comfortably
  • The costume obstructs your pet’s vision or hearing in any way
  • There are small or dangling pieces that can easily be chewed off and may present a choking hazard
  • The costume restricts your pet’s ability to breathe, eat, drink, or “potty”

Make sure that, no matter what costume you choose, your pet is still able to wear his or her collar with up-to-date ID tags.

If you have any questions or concerns about pet costume safety, please give us a call.
We can’t wait to see you and your pet at Western Days!