It’s amazing to me how many people dress their dogs up for Halloween, Christmas, everyday activities, weddings, and I could go on!  We have never dressed our dogs in dog clothes until we bought a little Morkie (part Maltese, part Yorkie) for my daughter’s softball coach.  My daughter and I had so much fun buying dog clothes for her and she was so cute and adorable in them!  After that, my son dressed up our big white Lab, whose name is Scout, for Halloween.  He dressed him up as a hot dog and of course, we thought he  made an awesome hotdog!  I think if my dogs were smaller, I would dress them up more often.

So the question becomes . . . should you dress up your dog?  Here are some tips if you are considering dressing your dog up.

When dressing your dog, dress him in an outfit that is comfortable. Don’t dress him in anything that is too tight and constricting.  If his clothes are too tight it could cause him to have breathing difficulties.  Dress your dog in non-flammable clothing. Be practical when you dress your dog.  Dog clothes that are not comfortable can ruin the fun of dressing your dog up!  Choose warmer outfits for winter and lighter outfits for summer.  You could overheat your dog by dressing him in a sweater in the middle of the summer.  Be smart when dressing your dog!

You can dress your dog for any holiday.  Probably the holiday most popular for dressing your dog up is Halloween! Dogs can be dressed up to be scary, funny, cute, trendy, etc.  There are all kinds of Halloween costumes for dogs.  You can dress your dog up as a witch, a lobster, a hot dog, a  princess, or just about anything you can think of.  There are all kinds of Halloween websites that sell costumes for dogs.  Most costumes are made for little dogs so it would be a good idea to start shopping early if your dog is a large dog.  Standard dog sizes fit dogs from 1 to 40 lbs.

Costume Size Chart

XX Small Fits: 1 – 3 lbs.

X Small Fits:  4 – 7 lbs.

Small Fits:  8 – 11 lbs.

Medium Fits:  12 – 17 lbs.

Large Fits:  19 – 28 lbs.

X Large Fits:  29 – 40 lbs.


Other holidays you might want to dress your dog up for are Christmas, St. Patrick’s Day and Mardi Gras.  Dogs can also be dressed up for birthday parties.  I have seen Candy Cane costumes, Santa costumes, Leprechaun costumes, and Jester costumes for dogs.  There are all kinds of dog hats for birthday parties.  There are party hats, cupcake hats, cake hats…just about every kind of hat you can imagine for a dog!

More and more dogs are being dressed up for weddings.  According to an American Kennel Club survey, 18% of dog owners have included or would include their dog in their wedding.  Most dogs participate in weddings as attendants and guests.  They are included in the wedding photos and they dance and socialize at the receptions.  A lot of times, if the dog isn’t good in crowds or isn’t allowed where the wedding is being held, the dog will still be included in photos, on invitations and in keepsakes.  There are dog bridal veils, dog tuxedos with bow ties or regular ties, wedding gowns, custom made dresses, flower girl dresses, ring bearer scarfs, and I could go on.  As you can see, people go all out when dressing their dog for a wedding!
Dog In Dog Clothes
Clothing for your dog can be cute, but for some dogs it can be practical.  Dressing up dogs can be good for their health and well-being as long as it is done sensibly.  Dressing your dog in an outfit that is specifically designed to keep him warm is a good idea.  If your dog has a short coat, it is very possible that when temperatures are freezing he feels the chill.  Put a sweater or coat on him to help keep him warm.

If your dog is a long-haired dog, he probably doesn’t need to be dressed in a sweater or coat when it is cold outside.  But if it is raining, it would be a kind gesture to dress him in a raincoat.  It takes a while for all of that hair to dry and your dog can be uncomfortable sitting around with a wet coat.

You might want to keep a small wardrobe on hand for your dog.  Ideas for a small wardrobe would be a sweater, a winter coat, and a raincoat.  If you hunt with your dog a hunting vest is a must.  The hunting vest should have reflective paint or tape on it so you can see your dog in the dark.  If you take your dog fishing you should get a life jacket or vest for him.  It is important to keep your dog safe!

Believe it or not, there is even a National Dress Up Your Pet Day.  It is in the middle of January. In most parts of the country it is freezing cold in the middle of January so this makes for a good time to dress your dog up!

If your dog doesn’t like being dressed up, then try other options.  One option would be putting a bandana around your dog’s neck.  There are all kinds of bandanas with different designs on them.  You can also buy dog collars that are fashionable!  There are all kinds of designer dog collars to show your dog off in and there are holiday dog collars to celebrate any holiday with.  A different kind of dog collar is a bowtie collar.  It is a normal collar, except it has a darling bowtie on it. Dog bows are another favorite.  Putting a dog bow in your small dog’s fluffy hair is certainly not uncommon!  You can be creative in the different ways you can dress your dog even if your dog doesn’t like to wear clothes.