The 7 Types of Pet Costumes

First, let’s get one thing straight. Pets hate costumes.

I DON’T CARE IF YOU THINK YOUR DOG LOVES IT when you strap a Cowboy Barbie on his back, or YOUR KITTEH APPEARS TO ENJOY WEARING A PRINCESS TIARA. Someone needs to tell you, and it might as well be Cute Overload. Your pet pretty much hates it.

When we dress our pets up, it’s for our own selfish enjoyment. So you might as well DO A STELLAR JOB, because your pet only benefits from a costume if that costume generates gobs of attention.

You owe your pet a damn good costume. Which brings me to the point. A LOT of you are SLACKING and/or CONFUSED out there. Think of the ANIMALS. Let me show you what’s what. [Beckoning motion] First we have:

1. The Famous Human Costume

The Good: You always have to explain it. "He has a mini mohawk! He’s Mr. T., SEE!?"
The Bad: Your pet still hates you if you don’t step it up to make it recognizable

Exhibit A: Mr. T:


And a well-crafted Martha:


2. The Cutesy Hurl-a-Thon

The Good: You’ll get a lot of "Awn, he looks adorable!" from other insane people
The Bad: Anne Geddes will come after you with enormous hedge clippers

Behold Bunny in a Lettuce Cup:


3. The Non Sequitur Costume

The Good: Often very well-crafted. Drugs and/or heavy wine use is almost always associated with each costume idea.
The Bad: Lots of WTF?…OK! reactions.

The "BoomBox":


The "Mix Tape":


The "Buttered Pupcorn":


The "Rice Krispy Treat":


The "Ham":


The "Metro Line"!?!?!?!


4. The "I Had it Lying Around" Costume

The Good: You finally clean up the house
The Bad: Your cat continues to hate you

There’s the Boxed Wine Kitteh Leaf Thing:


And Aluminum Foil/Rubber Band Turtle ‘Jaws’;


5. The "My-pet-is-going-to-kill me-but-I’m-doing-it-anyway" Costume

The Good: Target Dog Costume Sales reach all-time high thanks to you
The Bad: Your pet kills you.


Nah, don’t take the tag off. What’s the point?


5. Build on Your Strengths Costume

The Good: A costume that takes advantage of and accentuates a particular pet attribute
The Bad: Your pet’s "attribute" is on display (the fact he looks like a pimp cannot be helpful)

Behold the Golden Retriever Lion:


The Built-in Ewok Face:


The Fish in a Bowl that Happens to look like a Jack-o-Lantern:


The Cow-Spotted terrier:


The Suave Hedge:


The Built-in Wetsuit:


And the Dog that Happens to Look like a Pimp:


6. The Epic Transformation Costume

The Good: The pinnacle of a great costume—creative! imaginative! inspiring! Transforming!
The Bad: Everyone else instantly feels like crap when they see your genius



The Jumbo Dachshund Dog:


The Wizard of Oz:


The Croc Versus Pup: (more photos here)


The Fast Food Gang [Making gang doughnut symbol with hand]:


The Thanksgiving Turkey Decision: (That thought bubble is actually part of the costume):


And, our current favorite, the Headless Horseman:


7. The Just Plain Wrong Costume

Don’t worry if costume types 1 through 6 don’t encourage you. There is always type 7; just plain wrong. When in doubt, you can always create fake cleavage for your Boxer.


Huge thanks to all Sender-Inners over at the Martha Stewart/CuteOverload Costume Contest. Keep those submissions coming!

In no particular order: Oswald the Pug by kheilbrunn, The BoomBox and Mix Tape by lawlerc, Vino Paws by lvmyboys3, Elvis pup by sashimi54, Cat that’s gonna kill by pastryprncess, hot dog vendor by StephanieJaxBeach, Oz by hrlollar Thanksgiving Decision by newfy, Ewok by raindropSJ, Cow by Breehan, Pumpkin Fish Tankie by piebispro, Martha Stewart Magazine by soulofart, Buttered Pupcorn by poc2u, Bulldog Pimpin’ by cknlomein, Headless Horseman by newfy, Boxer St. Pauli Girl by hobie_utah Ham Dog by PaleBlue, Retreiver Lion by JeanninePC99, Terrier Scuba Diver by herrinkr and James Bond Hedgehog by jacqtav.



  1. Oh noes! I BROKE Overload!!

    Oh, great, we’re back. And I just scared my cat laughing out loud at St. Pauli Boxer.

  2. Is this the longest post ever? Those costumes are great!!

  3. I tried to make my hamster a parrot costume once… Yeah…

    Too bad hamsters are able to squeeze out of anything or it could have been pretty cool : )

  4. I tried to make my hamster a parrot costume once… Yeah…

    Too bad hamsters are able to squeeze out of anything or it could have been pretty cool : )

  5. I tried to make my hamster a parrot costume once… Yeah…

    Too bad hamsters are able to squeeze out of anything or it could have been pretty cool : )

  6. I tried to make my hamster a parrot costume once… Yeah…

    Too bad hamsters are able to squeeze out of anything or it could have been pretty cool : )

  7. I tried to make my hamster a parrot costume once… Yeah…

    Too bad hamsters are able to squeeze out of anything or it could have been pretty cool : )

  8. I tried to make my hamster a parrot costume once… Yeah…

    Too bad hamsters are able to squeeze out of anything or it could have been pretty cool : )

  9. stubbedoo says:

    Gosh, maybe I should be a little more creative than just sticking a Halloween bandana on the old boys!

  10. I’m in love with the scuba-diving Boston up there. <3

  11. twonumberfives says:

    There are two number fives!

  12. That is one GRUMPY Rice Krispies treat.

  13. Box of Wine Cat WINS!!!!!

  14. winston

    (goes ded from lol)

  15. Is that really Winston? Wow, is he clearly plotting murder or what?! The hovertext on the Elvis costume – yep, I had to say it in “the voice.” Made me snerk.

  16. PS- Meg EN FUEGO with the hovertexts!

  17. Meh, if my Houdini (pic at for the curious) really hates getting dressed up so much, why did he always complain (loudly) until I got him dressed whenever I took him out to the local Ren Faire or pet store, then strutted, purred like crazy & showed off once he was dressed, and then pouted so much when I took the shirt & kilt off afterwards? (I have multiple witnesses, including some who are usually against dressing up animals). (And no, I didn’t train him to cuddle the flask; I just looked over one day and he’d dug it out to cuddle all on his own – though sometimes he went for the small glass water bottle instead)

    Heh, he didn’t care one time he spent most of the day half-soaked because an ice bag leaked (it was really hot out that day), but when we took the kilt off (thinking wet wool=scratchy & uncomfortable) he pouted for hours.

    The only time he’s not wanted to wear them was one time when my dad kept teasing him about wearing a skirt; that time he took the clothes off himself, though he still pouted.

  18. Wow — EPIC POST! 😀

  19. …whoaaaa.

  20. ThreeCatNight says:

    OMG! Love the properly p.o’d “Krispie” Kitteh, and that Ewok, among others, but still can’t understand why people insist upon inflicting their own tastes upon their pets. I’d be darned if I even attempted to dress up said tres gatitos in any garb (and not only darned, but skewered and bandaged too!)

  21. OMFG I even said out loud “Is that Winston?” and when I rolled my mouse over the pic, sure enough, “Yes, it’s Winston!” AWESOME!

  22. I fully expected the Elvis dog hover text to say, “Y’ain’t nothin’ but a hound dog….”

  23. The turtle with the shark fin is pretty much the best costume ever. Perhaps I will affix one to my head and go as a shark. Also love the hedgie in the tux. AMAZING!

  24. Dexter Fishmore says:

    [slow clap]

  25. Y’all can have all the kudos in the world. Picky has once again rejected all attempts at costuming for Halloween. In fact, he went Kitty-tonic at the suggestion that I put a flea collar (!) on him, so no pics this year, either.

  26. @Deckard: Thank you. Thank you ver’ much.

  27. *dies from turtle&shark’s fin overload*

  28. The faces on these animals look very sad to me.

  29. Ah, poor Winston. I wonder if Rich has a video of getting Winnie krispie-ized…

  30. The boxer in the last pics… the cleavage looks more like bum cleavage to me…

  31. I like Rice Krispy treat, Ewok, and Croc Verus Pup.

  32. StormCat:

    My guess would be that your cat associates the clothes and flask with the activities that go along with them (ie: going to the pet store and Ren Faire where he gets mucho attention and cuddles). He probably cries until you put them on him because to him, putting on those clothes equates to lots of love and attention. And the clothes and flask probably retain some scent of the activities which is why he cuddles with it/them.

  33. I adore the Winston crispy treat and I LOVE the scuba diving Boston. I wish I could see how the Boston walks with those flippers on his feet.

  34. Love is a Mixtape.

    [I’d agree, except I’ve moved on to mixing gapless CDs… – Ed.]

    [Seriously, the other day I even sang a quick backup harmony behind Bono that I’ve been dying to add, ever since “With or Without You” was on the air. Now it’s finally the way it always should’ve been, to my ear. I can’t even tell you how gratifying five well-placed notes and a little reverb can be… – Ed.]

  35. Benny's Mum says:

    where can I get teeny tiny flippers please???

  36. Benny's Mum says:

    where can I get teeny tiny flippers please???

  37. Benny's Mum says:

    where can I get teeny tiny flippers please???

  38. Benny's Mum says:

    where can I get teeny tiny flippers please???

  39. Benny's Mum says:

    where can I get teeny tiny flippers please???

  40. Benny's Mum says:

    where can I get teeny tiny flippers please???

  41. Great post Meg! The Metro line was super scary and Winston looked ready to do bodily harm to next person who walks by!

  42. OK, as a registered member of the Beagle Party, I should be all over the croc-n-pup, but nothing will ever equal the sheer majesty of the HAM DOG in my eyes.

    Ham dog, ham dog, where you been?
    ‘Round the block for Halloween!

  43. Elvis pooch is beyond excellent!

    [Yep. I do wonder if The King can see through those glasses, tho… – Ed.]

  44. My Wheatster looks happy, don’t you think? Spider Dog, Spider Dog…

    Sunny was the cutest little cheerleader:

    They have never really minded us putting things on them, as long as we don’t put them on their heads…

  45. AMAZING ENTRY….pure brilliance.

  46. Elvis dog for the win, by the way.

  47. oh man, the Orange Line. represent!

  48. CoffeeCup says:

    I am loving the Metro line costumes…I recognize the style, so I dare say they’re referring to Northern Virginia metro stops since it’s the Orange line. Or I could be wrong…

  49. I’m pretty sure you’re right, CoffeeCup!

  50. Meg:

    I have been coming to this site for over a year now and I’ve gone back through the archives and read every single post.

    This is your best work ever. I haven’t laughed so hard in months. And I laugh a lot.

    AND — I have not even read the hovertext. I was laughing so hard I forgot to mouseover and didn’t realize until I got to the comments that I had neglected it. So now I get to go back and relive the whole thing again and laugh a million more times.

    YOU, Meg, have MADE MY DAY.

    Thank you, I am in awe.

  51. NOW I have read hovertext.


    Alt hovertext for dog-cow: “What do you mean, jump over the moon?”

  52. Space Cowgirl says:

    The Thanksgiving turkey killer one is my favorite. The dog is all “wut?”

  53. This is a GREAT post! Thanks for the laugh 🙂

  54. hovertext on Mr. T dog just killed me 😉 snickah!

    also, how the hell did Rich get Winston in that box?!

  55. The turtle with the shark fin clearly kicks all the ass in this thread. WINNAR.

    [ – Ed.]

  56. Love the scuba diving dog with the flippahs!!

    I bet Rich waited until Winston was sleeping — perhaps drugged even! — to stuff him in the rice crispy box…

    Of course he probably had to make it up later with a deep ear itching (ew)

  57. LOL! WMP! Thanks for giving everyone in my office a good monday laugh! Aren’t our pets the best? Even the murder plotters?

  58. LOL! The cat in the box of wine wins for most pissed off looking. I would not want to be around when they let him/her out of there!

    Lovin’ the hovertext! Suave Hedgie and Croc eating Beagle were my favs! 🙂

  59. What, no Crazy Eggbeater Head Guy? Gimme some canday??

  60. Oh my God, the wiener hot dog is the winner of my heart.

  61. Best. Post. EVAH. I can’t tell you how much it pleases me for shiny happy Cute Overload to get sarcastic on our asses.

  62. My brother bought a Santa Claus costume for his black lab one Christmas. Poor little guy was so obviously humiliated wearing it that we dubbed it the “Santa Suit of Submission.” My brother put it on the dog whenever he was overexcited and needed to be calmed down.

    I actually burst out laughing at the Winston pic. Good thing I’m home today.

  63. I’ll say it again: Ham dog! Ham dog! Ham dog!

  64. Winston is so pissed off that there’s actually a Visible Aura of Fury roiling around him. SCARY!!!!!!

  65. LOL Theo! “I’m Mr. Protractor Face!”

  66. Wow Meg, you have out done yourself.
    First of all…this had to take a long time to put together. Second, damn funny!

  67. @CoffeeCup and Kris:
    I think the Metro line pup’s mom and dad are wearing Vienna and New Carrollton shirts, respectively, so they could represent anywhere in NoVA, DC or MD.

    Wonder how my dog would feel about dressing up as the Franconia/Springfield stop next year?

    And OMG, wuv the costumes!!!

  68. Are we sure that Rich is still alive? Winston looks like, “This is one you will not get away with. You die as soon as you get me out of this freakin’ box!”
    And – laughed out loud at The Wizard of Oz bunch – Dorothy is a scream. Thanks for making this a much better day.

  69. I larfed till I barfed.

    That is funny shiznad. The Anne Geddes comment made me snort, and then the dog with cleavage made me nearly pee a little.

  70. Capt' Tightpants says:

    epic win.

    when I saw the ewok it was my favorite, until I saw 00Hedge. HA!

    “Steps slowly away from photo”
    BWAH HA!

  71. Capt' Tightpants says:

    epic win.

    when I saw the ewok it was my favorite, until I saw 00Hedge. HA!

    “Steps slowly away from photo”
    BWAH HA!

  72. Capt' Tightpants says:

    epic win.

    when I saw the ewok it was my favorite, until I saw 00Hedge. HA!

    “Steps slowly away from photo”
    BWAH HA!

  73. Capt' Tightpants says:

    epic win.

    when I saw the ewok it was my favorite, until I saw 00Hedge. HA!

    “Steps slowly away from photo”
    BWAH HA!

  74. Capt' Tightpants says:

    epic win.

    when I saw the ewok it was my favorite, until I saw 00Hedge. HA!

    “Steps slowly away from photo”
    BWAH HA!

  75. Capt' Tightpants says:

    epic win.

    when I saw the ewok it was my favorite, until I saw 00Hedge. HA!

    “Steps slowly away from photo”
    BWAH HA!

  76. Holy God! Lol!

    Where does one begin? It’s too much food for the eyes and I LOVE it! Gotta admit the Oktoberfest sexy Fraulein will have me rolling for the rest of the day. Hee-hee! ;D

    [It’s the St. Pauli Pug… – Ed.]

  77. Basenji Metro? Pug SCUBAer? LOVE it!

    I think that for the amount of walkies, pettins, and table scraps we hand over to our four-legged friends all year is compensation for one teeny tiny evening of dress up.

  78. i loveee the whole: my-pet-is-going-to-kill-me-but-im-doing-it-anyway!
    so funny………..sooo……….. inspiring!!!!

  79. BTW, ups to the Metro family. My brother lives in Takoma Park – “the Upper West Side with lawns.”

  80. gatekchiclet says:

    i’m considering dressing my cat up as chinese food…you know, one of those pagoda take-out containers.

    …horrible? or horribly hilarious!

  81. Juniper Jupiter says:


    Oh my gahd!!!

    That was too good!

    I thought I’d seen everything until I saw the Bierfraulein!

    That was too MUCH!!!

    I DID pee!! :D!!

    If this keeps up, I’m gonna have to send you guys my cleaning bill!

  82. my vote is for the St. Pauli boxer – I haven’t laughed that hard in a long time. Thanks Meg!! It is the best

  83. Gail (the first one) says:

    @RBC: LOL!!!

  84. Gail (the first one) says:

    I love the Golden Retriever Lion!! So many, so funny!!

  85. So many awesome costumes. After a hard day like this one, I needed that laugh.

    That boxer seems to be laughing, which only makes the wrongness funnier.

    EPIC POST, Meg!

  86. This was my laughs for the say XD
    Amazings costumes!

  87. Meg you can’t count. This is amazing 🙂

  88. Omg. They’re the two ends of the Orange Line, so when the dog runs back and forth between them, he’s like the metro going back and forth and that costume is OUTSTANDING.

  89. Rice Krispy Kitteh to owner:

    “I’d like you to meet my friend, Dante. He’s going to take you down where you’ll hear your last ‘snap, crackle pop’. No, you won’t need a sweater.”

  90. Brandi7920 says:

    Seriously – Winston cracked me UP! lmfao He is going to kill anyone who comes near him…seriously.

    And then the liondog hovertext had me ROFL unable to breath LOL. Omg. best. post. ever. tyvm 🙂 The CIIIIIRCLEEE OF LIIIIIIIIFE. Dhuuhm!

    Lofs eet!

  91. Ewok dog made me almost pee my pants. Thanks.

  92. [It’s the St. Pauli Pug… – Ed.]

    Correction duly noted! 😀

  93. I was lol’ing here at home all by myself from nearly the beginning, but the hovertext on the second St. Pauli picture did me in. Wonder if the neighbors are worrying about me?

    And to think there will be more photos coming in every day until Friday.

  94. Raemie L. says:

    LMAO at this most awesome post, Meg.

  95. Raemie L. says:

    I can’t be the only one thinking, “Box of Wine Cat” -> “Winehouse Cat”.

  96. You know, Raemie, I think you may be right.

  97. Hahahah… That pug looks like Scuba Steve!!!

  98. Errr.. disregard the Pug remark.. but he still looks like Scuba Steve

  99. OMG. Those had me in stitches. Favourites: The rather authentic Ewok and the Elvis dog. 😀

  100. Jenn in IL says:

    I’m surprised no one has said anything about the fast food Collies! They, personally, seem to be some of the only guys up there that don’t mind their costumes. In fact, Mr. Eat’n’Park looks downright happy! I love them and it makes me miss my collie dearly.

    On a related note, my hound girl loves her costume. She very contentedly wore it all afternoon yesterday, acting like nothing was wrong at all. And it had a headband too!! My Shiba Inu, however, wishes a painful death on me if I so much as put a tiny cape on her. 😉

  101. I’ve managed to get a collar and tie on Mr. Whiskers, but not for long enough to get a good picture.

  102. I, too am a NoVA CO’er, and the Metro Line made me ROFL–we srsly need to do a Meetup or something. Geographical identification aside, these make me absolutely choke up a lung laughing–SO great!
    My cats would shred me to death if I so much as *looked* at them with an accessory in hand, but bravo to these folks.

  103. My favorite one was the Ewok. It’s wrong, but OMG so funny!

  104. @hey-h, OMG your insight about the Metro orange line costume is brilliant.

  105. I disagree with that dogs hate being dressed up. I have a Pom that loves to wear clothes and costumes. She will even climb into my shirts if they are laying around. She then prances around like she is so hot. She is the exception.

  106. Sharon Wilson says:

    I LOVE the expression on the tortie with the little hat! And the Ewok dog has just the perfect face! I just laughed when I saw the St. Pauli girl! I once bought a small dog’s devil costume for our new kitten (who was a lil’ devil at the time); she started playing with the cape as soon as it was on her and shook the horns off two seconds after they were placed. It was hilarious, though!

  107. OMG – this is the second day I’ve looked at these & still don’t know what to say. LOLOLOLOL – of course!
    No one as mentioned one of MY favorite hover texts: “Where’s John Cusak when you need him”… sigh
    and I looked at Rice Crispy Treat, thinking it looks like Winston, then the hovertext tells me “yup, it’s Winston”. Meg must be a mindreader!

  108. The Terrier with udders was just priceless. I have to think of something to dress my cat up with, lol.

    I think I might go with the ‘lion’ idea since he’s a cat, and he’s always biting me -glares across room-

  109. lol @ the lion dog hovertext.
    “The circle of LIIIIIFE!”

    Lion King FTW.

  110. Looked at these whilst I should be working, and cried with laughter. Now have a fit of the giggles cos I cannot stop thinking about them, especially the doggie in the wet suit! Due into an important meeting in 10 mins – going to get myself a coffee to try and compose myself.

  111. hey NOVAers:

    if we have a DC metro area CO fan meet-up, i wanna come!

    green line/Columbia Heights represents!


  113. Am I the only one who notices there are TWO number 5’s??

  114. Love for the Metro.

    Orange line (West Falls Church stn) representing!

    (@CoffeeCup, you can clearly see “New Carrolton” and “Vienna” on their sleeves.)

    More love for the blue Italian Greyhound Tinman. <3

    And the rice krispy winston.

    and the turtle shark.

    and the croco-beagle….

  115. JB99 — shhhhh!!

  116. OMG SOOOOOOOOO cute i am so totaly going to ffd this to evryone it is so cute lol happy halloween ppl

  117. totalee puppy says:

    Thanks, Meg, for the best
    Hallowe’en ever! My favorites are the group
    photos (Oz and Fast Food),
    Ewok, doggie with udders (looks simple to do),Scuba…best suggestion is from gatekchiclet for “Chinese Food.” PS Has anyone considered a chicken bucket? (might be easy)

  118. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I have not laughed so hard in MONTHS.

  119. More pictures of the golden retriever/lion: