Activities For Dogs On Halloween

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Introduction

For many people, Halloween is their favorite holiday, and they start thinking about costumes and decorations long before the season draws near.  It is also the one time of year that you can get away with cute costumes for your furry friend that go beyond the usual doggie sweater or winter galoshes.  Even dog-safe make-up is popular, and your dog will certainly enjoy the attention and fun surrounding this holiday if you give them a chance to participate.  After all, your dog wants to be part of the action.

Howling Halloween Party

Most Popular
1 Vote
Any Day
Moderate
Normal
2 to 4 Hours
Items needed
Doggy bags
Pet-safe decorations
Pet-safe costume
Activity description

The only thing better than a good Halloween party is an amazing Halloween "pawrty."  Halloween is celebrated on the last night of October when the weather in many places is quite cold.  Additionally, Halloween activities are usually done at night.  The good news is, your Howling Halloween party is an indoor function, so the weather outside does not matter much. This activity is a big one and takes some planning.  You want to start by planning your guest list.  It's perfectly fine to invite non-pet parents to the party, but you want to invite your friends with dogs since this party is really for them.  Clear a large space in your home where all the dogs can gather, peacefully.  Start by removing any dangerous or delicate objects that might hurt your furry friends or break during the festivities.  No party is complete with decorations but be mindful of small and dangerous decor that might harm your guests.  To keep them distracted, give everyone a doggy bag when they arrive.  This might prevent them from chewing on throw pillows or other items.  In your invitation, encourage your friends and their dogs to dress up as well.  There are many little activities you can do at the party as well, like costume contests, parades, and dog training games.        

Step
1
Make your guest list
Planning your Howling Halloween party starts with a guest list. You will want to keep this list relative to the space you have in your home, and fewer guests are easier to control than large numbers of furry friends. You will have to plan this part out in advance so you can give your guests enough time to respond to the invite. Also, be sure to invite other guests but be clear, this is a dog-themed party.
Step
2
Decorate your space
Halloween decorating is one of the best parts of Halloween. Many people go all out with fog machines, scary animatronics, and loads of cobwebs. However, be mindful of your guests. These kinds of decorations might over frighten your furry friends or be unsafe. You want to choose Halloween decor that is pet safe and as far off the ground as possible. Armed with your pet-safe decorations, clear your largest indoor spot for your guests and make sure any breakables are put away. If you plan on using the yard for games and free-time, be sure it is completely secured first.
Step
3
A trick and a treat
You can have a lot of fun coming up with fun games and activities to do at your party. Remember, this is all about dogs so choose activities that include them. Training games are a fun way to pass the time. As your guests arrive, give their owners a doggy bag with high-quality treats and a fun toy as an icebreaker. Hopefully, all your furry guests come in costume as well. If so, you might plan on a costume contest or a "pawrade." If you're planning on a "pawrade" through the neighborhood, everyone should have their leashes for safety.
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Trick or Treating

Popular
1 Vote
Any Day
Moderate
Normal
1 Hour
Items needed
Pet-safe costume
Leash
Activity description

Your dog loves walks with you so why not take them out with you while trick-or-treating with the kids?  You know your dog best, if they can handle the extended walk and the potential to run into some pretty funny and scary characters on the streets, then bring Fido along.  Trick-or-treating activities happen in the later part of the day through the early evening on October 31st.  The weather during this time is fickle for different parts and may be a bit cold.  Plan your night out based on the weather and skip this activity if it looks like rain or even snow. People love seeing dogs dressed up for Halloween so find a pet-safe costume that works for your dog.  If your dog does not tolerate wearing a costume, consider getting some pet-safe, water-soluble make-up and turn your dog into a clown, mime, or harlequin for their big night out.    

Step
1
Find a pet-safe costume
Smaller dogs have a much easier time finding something to wearing year-round as well as on Halloween. Dog costumes seem to be made for the smaller guys. However, you can find many costumes for any size dog at your local pet stores. Avoid anything that doesn't fit right, or that has loose parts for safety reasons. Grab some pet-safe make-up if a costume is not going to work for your pooch. Pet-safe make-up products are water-soluble and easy to remove. Paint your dog's face but don't overdo it. Remember, you have to remove it later.
Step
2
Gather the crew and the leash
As the kids get older, you may be tempted to let them go out in the neighborhood by themselves or with another parent. It's best if you leave your dog out of the fun if this is the case. However, if you or the kids want to take the dog out trick or treating, an adult will have to take responsibility for the dog. This is for everyone's safety, including your dog's. Make sure the kids are not getting your dog too excited about the activity and grab the leash. If you find yourself at the home of a neighbor you do not know, be sure to keep your dog behind the kids as to not potentially frighten or alarm your neighbor. Otherwise, keep a good pace with the trick or treating activity and enjoy your walk with your dog.
Step
3
Treats and clean up
Many homes expect to see dogs out during Halloween, and they prepare with treats especially for your dog. It's always best to have the neighbor give you the treat so you can feed your dog and you should carry a little doggy bag just for the potential treats. Avoid letting the kids give the dog any of their treats as well. Candy is definitely not good for your dog. When the gang is all pooped out from their trick or treating, return home and help your dog out of their costume and makeup. Don't let them sleep in it either, as this might be unsafe or lead to make-up smeared furniture.
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Daytime Yard Games

Popular
0 Votes
Sunny Day
Cheap
Easy
30 Minutes
Items needed
Treats
Toys
Activity description

You might spend some time in the front yard putting together your Halloween decorations.  Anytime you are outside; there is a good chance your dog wants to be there too, so don't forget to have some downtime with them.  Halloween activities are usually at night, but you can have some fun with your dog outside during the day too.  Sunny days are the best for outdoor games, and you will want to avoid playing in the rain. Anytime you are planning outdoor playtime; you must include the treats and the toys.  Whether you're setting up a Halloween obstacle course or scent training with hide-and-go-treat, you will need toys and treats that are engaging and tasty.

Step
1
Plan an outdoor activity
Your dog sees you busy outside putting up Halloween decorations and getting into the spirit of this ghoulish holiday. Halloween decorations may not be safe for your dog, so you want to keep them distracted from them and happy with other outdoor activities. Plan for one of these activities outside, like hide-and-go-sniff.
Step
2
Hide small treats at ground level
Before you take your dog outside, hide some extra smelly, extra tasty treats in various spots outside. Avoid areas that have Halloween decorations or other potentially hazardous objects. Once hidden, invite your dog into the yard and lead let them go exploring for the treats. Your dog may need a little guidance at first, but this is part of scent training. Once they understand the game, they will be all ready for hide-and-go-sniff.
Step
3
Teach a new trick
After all the treats, you may want to work on some tricks. Your dog will love the time they spend with you outside. Work on any trick you want but pay attention to your dog's fatigue levels, especially after playing hide-and-go-treat. They will be excited, and teaching them to calm down after fun activities is an important part of dog training. Focus on stationary tricks, like giving paw, covering their eyes with their paw, or ears up. Give your dog lots love and affection but go easy on all the treats during Halloween.
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More Fun Ideas...

Community Dog Events

Many communities have daytime dog events for Halloween where pets can dress up, participate in games, and hang out with each other.  Keep your eyes open for a community pet Halloween event in your area.

Visit the Pumpkin Patch

In the days leading up to Halloween, many people go out in search of the perfect pumpkin for their Jack-o-lantern.  Many pumpkin patches welcome dogs along but always call ahead before leaving.

Picture Time

Your dog will, undoubtedly, be cute as ever if their costume.  Be sure you take pictures of them in their get-up.  Dogs do not like sitting still so staged photo shoots in costumes might be too hard for your pup.  However, you can capture all the fun on the go.

Conclusion

Halloween is a lot of fun for people of all ages, so why not invite your dog to participate as well?  Whether you're throwing a howling Halloween party or dressing your pooch up for trick or treat activities, if you include your dog, you are sure to have a paw-riffic time with your best friend this season.