10/22/15 at 11:43 AM | Published Under Dog Behavior by Sandy Robins

Halloween – or Howl’oween as it’s referred to by many pet parents, is the most popular event on the pet calendar. This is probably because it’s an occasion that’s all about treating. And treats come in a variety of forms – from yummy edibles to a great new toy. Preferably both!


Because dogs are such social creatures, many enjoy accompanying their family members to go trick or treating in the neighborhood.


However, in the same way its always a good idea to “wear in” a new pair of shoes before actually putting them on to go somewhere, if you are planning to dress up your dog, be sure to purchase the outfit well in advance and allow your pooch to wear it for short intervals around the house on several occasions before the actual day.


There’s no shortage of costume ideas for dogs of all shapes and sizes. For years, the most popular dog costume has been the bee. However, this year, there could be strong competition for outfits inspired by the wildly popular Minions.  


When selecting a costume, look for soft, lightweight fabrics and no loose ties. Avoid any ornamentation that could possibly be swallowed. If your dog simply refuses to dress up, perhaps he will tolerate a hat. As an alternative, consider painting a fun design on his fur with non-toxic pet paint that will easily wash out.


However, if your dog is a scaredy cat when to comes to dressing up, it’s important take his anxiety seriously and don’t force him to put on an outfit. Likewise, leave him it home if he doesn’t like mixing with boisterous people populating the sidewalks.


Never let children take charge of the dog on trick and treat neighborhood outings; there are far too many distractions. Holding a flashlight and a candy bag is probably all they can handle. Instead, make sure your dog is on a strong leash with an adult on the other end and don't allow your doggy pal to accompany children right up to the front door in case the incumbent witch-dog or barking bat is not welcoming to any visiting canine on his doorstep!


When it comes to treating, chocolate is highly poisonous for dogs and candy is as bad for canine teeth as it is for humans. Most doggy bakeries go to town on occasions such as Howl’oween making biscuits shaped in all sorts of appropriate festive shapes such as witches, bats and devils. So be sure to get your pet his own supply of doggie confectionary and stock up for visiting canine trick or treaters too. And a word of caution, make sure your pets don’t help themselves to the candy stashes children in the household acquire for themselves either.


If your dog is staying home on Howl’oween and is spooked by your doorbell ringing every few minutes throughout the evening, it’s a good idea to closet him in another part of the house away from the activity. Treat him with something yummy to chew on to keep him occupied and spoil him with a new toy. The GoDog Black Dragon is an ideal Halloween toy with its purple tummy and green tail and scales. It has a squeaker in the belly and a crinkly tail tip to rev up the canine fun and games. Made with patented Chew Guard technology, it will endure hours of fun long after the Halloween lights have been taken down and packed away until next year.


About the Author

Sandy-dog-554x1024 Sandy Robins

As the country’s leading multi-media celebrity pet lifestyle expert and  influencer, SANDY ROBINS documents the wonderful relationship that we have with our pets highlighting trends and innovative ideas as they happen.

Many dogs and cats have lifestyles that mirror their pet parents’ own lives. Nothing is too good for our fur kids. Consequently, the pet industry is a 58 billion dollar business – bigger than toys, candy and jewelry combined. Sandy documents this industry every step of the way  highlighting how these trends can improve our pet’s general health and well being and enhance our human-animal bond.


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