Halloween is right around the corner and I thought it would be the perfect time to write a DIY (do it yourself) on How To Make Your Own Dog Costume for Halloween. This year we dressed Derby in a lion mane dog costume and it was definitely a hit at our guide dog costume party.
Last year I wasn’t too creative with Stetson and his first Halloween costume. However, Target has some great costumes and Stetson and I both dressed up as bee’s (I guess you could say we were a swarm of bees). This year we decided to do a little more preparation and after researching the internet and posting about dog costumes and our favorite: the alligator dog costume…I got really excited about designing my own dog costume for Derby and our Halloween guide dog meeting.
Derby’s Dog Costume – Simba The Lion
Here are some images of Derby in his dog costume as Simba the Lion:
Derby chomping on his prey (looks like a piece of grass or twig)
Derby the happy dog!
Derby giving us his best lion pose!
Don’t mess with Derby the lion.
Derby smelling the grass.
I’m sure everyone’s now wondering…what a brilliant costume! How did you do it?
How To Make Your Own Dog Costume
I was secretly hoping I would get a yellow Labrador Retriever or a Golden Retriever so I could dress them up as a lion for Halloween. If you saw my post on The 6 Best Dog Costumes On The Internet then you would have seen the Golden Lion who was actually supposed to be Lambert the Sheepish lion. A very random reference, but I just recently saw the short cartoon when watching Disney’s the Fox and the Hound…I’m a kid at heart and still watch cartoons.
Anyhow, I’ve been searching for a lions mane since I got Derby and couldn’t find anything suitable until Halloween costumes started rolling into the local Walmarts and Targets. While walking through Target I saw the perfect Lions mane…it was the hair on the wolfman’s mask. So here are the step-by-step instructions for constructing your very own dog costume.
Items you will need for this project:
- Wolfman Mask from Target
- Elastic band
- Piece of Velcro
- Extra Collar
- Sewing kit (needle and thread)
- Knife or Scissors
- Optional – rubber band
- Go to Target and buy the $9.99 Wolfman mask.
- Grab a knife or scissors and unstitch the hair from the latex mask.
- With rudimentary sewing skills attach the collar to the lions mane (this will keep it in place when costume is worn.
- Next, attach the velcro under the neck. This will keep the lions mane closed around the neck area.
- Finally attach the elastic higher up from the velcro just under the chin. This helps to keep the hair from sliding back behind the ears.
- Optional – take an extra piece of hair from the mask and attach it to your dogs tail with the rubber band.
And the final results…we won Most Original Costume at our Guide Dogs of America meeting! YAY!
The Fearless Lion
Farm animals about to be preyed upon by the mighty lion!
Thanks to Joe for the wonderful photographs at our GDA meeting.
Let me know if you have any questions about How To Make Your Own Dog Costume. I, myself am not very creative nor very crafty, but was able to piece this one together.
If you haven’t already seen last years Halloween post then please check it out and get some new dog costume ideas. Definitely one of our favorites was the headless horseman dog costume.
Did your dog wear a dog costume for Halloween? If so, what did he/she dress up as?
Over the past week I started receiving dog Halloween safety tips in my email inbox and through my RSS reader. I did take the time to scan several of the emails and articles and decided that it might be a good idea to share some of these dog Halloween safety tips with all my doggie friends.
A lot of the tips are common sense, but just getting a short refresher list will help you and I be aware of any dangers that might be lurking this Halloween.
Dog Halloween Safety Tips
Here are a few Halloween safety tips for you and your dog:
- Dressing Your Dog In A Halloween Costume – Is Lex dressed up as Pink the Pig for Halloween? Some dogs and dog owners enjoy dressing up in Dog Halloween costumes. We put a post of The 6 Best Dog Costumes On The Internet here on Puppy In Training. Guide Dogs of America encourages us to dress up our dogs. The main reason being that they want us to handle our dogs paws, ears, claws, face…etc. so the dog won’t be shy or timid when their blind owner reaches for them or grooms them. Dressing up your dog is a good way to teach your dog to be tolerant when getting handled in different ways. That being said I wouldn’t dress my dog if I did not think he was comfortable in his costume. Linus does not like getting dressed up, so when Halloween rolls around he does not wear a costume. Be careful with your dog costumes. Make sure the costume is comfortable fitting. Also, do not leave your dog unattended when in a Halloween costume…keep a close eye on him and make sure he does not accidentally choke himself or ingest parts of the costume.
- Keep Your Dog Indoors – This may not always be possible, but Halloween brings added noise and activity that can potentially frighten (isn’t that the point of Halloween…not for your dog) your dog. While this may be fun for kids running around in costumes it’s not so fun for your dog. If possible try to keep your dog indoors away from those scary ghosts and goblins.
- The Counter Surfing Dogs – I’m sure no one likes their dog counter surfing (taking items from the table top). This can be especially harmful to a dog during Halloween…chocolate can be quickly gobbled up (especially if you have Labrador Retrievers like me), but it’s quite toxic to your dog.
- Scary Halloween Decorations – While scary Halloween decorations can be fun for you and the family they can potentially be harmful to your dog. Candles in Jack-O-Lanterns can be knocked over burning your dog. Glass decorations can be broken or consumed. I’ve even heard of a dog consuming an entire pumpkin. When decorating your home be sure to keep your dog in mind and a close eye on his actions when he’s around any Halloween decorations.
- Trick or Treaters - Some dogs can be quite fearful of people in scary costumes. Others might be just fine. If you live in a neighborhood with lots of children then you will potentially have lots of trick-or-treaters. If your dog is like Linus my Aussie mix then he will not enjoy the ringing of the doorbell over and over as well as children in scary costumes. It also might be a good idea to keep your dog away from the front door with a baby gate. If you invite guests inside you should introduce them to your dog in a positive manner. If your dog’s still frightened you might want to keep him in another part of your home to avoid the commotion of Halloween guests.
I hope this list of Dog Halloween Safety Tips helps keep you dogs and puppies safe this Halloween. If you have any additional tips I’d love to hear about them in the comments section below.
Do you have any additional Dog Halloween Safety Tips? Anything you’d like to add about this coming Halloween? By the way if you enjoy seeing dogs in costumes check out the Halloween Dog Costume Parade in Long Beach this coming Sunday, October 26th.
Time to break out your favorite Halloween dog costume. If you’re the creative type, time to design and make your homemade dog costume from scratch. Yep, it’s that time of year again the leaves are starting to change color (not so much here in Orange County, California), the days are getting shorter, and the evening are getting cooler. It’s that time of year when you and your best pal can dress up like the silliest of doggies or the most serious scary Weredoggie or Frankendoggie.
If you’re not into designing your very own dog costume than you can always run to your local Target or Halloween costume store or do as I often do and order through Amazon.com. Check out this little stinker skunk- Dog Halloween Costume. That would look great on a black dog like Stetson or Linus.
If you’re still having trouble coming up with the perfect dog costume then take inspiration from my post on The 6 Best Costumes On The Internet.
I’ve already started working furiously on Derby’s new dog costume. He’s going to be…well I’m not going to tell you just yet. Let me first finish it up and I’ll put together a post including pictures and all.
For those of you dog lovers out there who love to dress up your pup the Haute Dog Howl’oween Dog Parade is just around the corner.
Haute Dog Howl’oween Dog Parade
What: The 2008 Haute Dog Howl’oween Dog Parade
When: Sunday, October 26th, 2008, 2:30pm
Where: Livingston Park
4900 E. Livingston Drive
Long Beach, CA 90803
Here’s a little information on the event:
The 10-block sidewalk parade takes place on Second St. between Roycroft and Granada avenues and lasts about an hour.
More than 600 dogs last year helped us to raise more than $10,000. More costumed dogs are expected this year!
All events are free to spectate.
ENTRY: $15/advance or $25/day-of per parade dog. $2 for kids’ costume contest.
For more information on the Haute Dog Howl’oween Dog Parade visit their website.
Can You Make It To The Dog Costume Parade?
I plan on joining in the fun and festivities of the Dog costume Halloween parade. However, I have many obstacles to overcome. First, I’m captaining my tennis team that weekend and will not know my schedule until after we complete our morning matches. I also have a hockey game that afternoon at 4pm which I will skip in lieu of the Dog costume parade. Other than that…no excuses and I’ll see you there!
Will Derby Be At The Parade In His Dog Costume?
Unfortunately, I’m not sure if this is an appropriate event for Derby. There are two things that concern me about this event. First of all, there might be too much noise and excitement for Derby. After all he’s only 5 months old (closer to 6 months by then). Second, it may not be a good idea to bring him around so many strange dogs. The goal with Derby is to do my best to make sure he does not have a bad experience. This is something I’ll probably discuss with other people from our Orange County GDA group as I’m sure some of them have attended this event in the past.
I hope to make it to the Haute Dog Howl’oween Dog Parade and I hope to see you and your puppies in their best costume.
Did you attend the Haute Dog Howl’oween Dog Parade last year or in the past? I’d love to hear what you thought about this Halloween dog costume parade.
This is a Puppy Training blog about our journey as guide dog puppy raisers. Most of the time we like to keep you posted about the latest puppy training tips, dog events, animal shelter and rescue information, puppy videos and pictures, dog toys and product reviews, and many other goings on in the wonderful world of puppies and dogs. However, from time to time we may get a little personal…sorry for that. Here’s a bit of information that’s going on in our life right now.
You may be wondering…”where have you been?” I haven’t written a post on this blog for over two months. I apologize. I ‘ll try to be more diligent with my posts to this site. Lets start off with Halloween which is right around the corner. Our last Guide Dogs of America (GDA) meeting was our annual Halloween meeting. Most of our dogs were dressed in costumes. It’s a good idea to dress your dog up for several reasons…first, your dog will be more tolerant to wearing different kinds of outfits on their head, feet, bodies (good for guide dogs because they will be wearing a jacket or harness for a good part of their lives)…and second, your dogs gets used to being handled by you.
Great Halloween Dog Costumes
Anyways, here is a picture of Stetson in his bumble bee outfit. The other guide dogs in training should have their pictures posted on our local Orange County GDA website at http://www.ocgda.com. Our group did just recently purchase the domain name ocgda.com, so feel free to check out all of the latest Orange County Guide Dog information at our new ocgda website.
By the way, if you want to see some great dog halloween costumes check out The 6 Best Dog Costumes On The Internet.
Puppy Training Jobs
Who is Canine Companions for Independence. Taken straight from their website: “Canine Companions for Independence is a national non-profit organization that enhances the lives of children and adults with disabilities by providing highly-trained assistance dogs and ongoing support to ensure a quality partnership.” I heard about CCI about 6 months ago and read through most of the pages on their website and browsed several of their monthly newsletters. About two months ago I noticed the job description for Puppy Program Manager listed on their website. They actually had two Puppy Program Manager positions open up one in the Southwest (Oceanside, CA) and one in the Northeast (Farmingdale, NY).
I thought what a great position…managing volunteers who do the same thing I’m currently doing with Stetson. I live about 45 minutes from Oceanside and emailed my resume for that position. I do have management and volunteer experience, however I was not hopeful because I do not have volunteer management experience. Anyways, several weeks passed and I received a call from CCI requesting an interview.
Needless to say I was very excited. I prepped for my interview by reading through the entire CCI website and also going over my interview preparation books. I put on my suit and headed out to Oceanside. I was excited just to see the CCI facility let alone interview for a job. When I arrived they had me fill out an application and I interviewed with two of the program managers. They were very pleasant and easy to talk to. I would say I did okay in my interview, but nothing fantastic. There were several dogs walking around the office. I assume they were Puppies in Training like Stetson. After the interview I got home wrote a couple of Thank you notes and sent them back to CCI.
It’s been about 2 1/2 weeks since my interview and just yesterday I received a letter from CCI (a bad sign). It was a standard rejection letter thanking me for interviewing and giving me the good news (you have some great skills) bad news (however we are looking for someone who better fits the position). Unfortunately, not a happy ending for me this time…oh well, I was just thrilled to have the opportunity to interview for the position. I’m not sure if they are still accepting resumes, but if you are interested you can go straight to their jobs link on the CCI website at http://www.cci.org/national/jobads/jobs_at_cci.html.
Good luck to anyone who applies for a job and good luck to whoever the next Puppy Program Manager is for CCI’s Southwest office.
So that’s what’s going on in the life of a Guide Dog Puppy Raiser. What about you? How’s your life going? Are you raising a puppy or working for one of the wonderful service or guide dog organizations across the country? We’d love to hear what people are up to in the comment section below.