Pets in costumes

by Patty Templeton

Love itI have wanted a dog for … YEARS. I have always either worked too much or been in a financial situation where it wasn’t feasible. In my dream world, I would shelter-rescue a Petit Brabancon (a short-haired Brussels Griffon). She would curl up on my lap while I’m writing short stories and stare at me judgmentally when I took too long of a break from my to-do list. After the work, we’d curl up on the couch to watch “Twin Peaks” and “Bob’s Burgers.”

Eventually, the day would come when I’d want to put her in a costume. Maybe I could be Beetlejuice and she could be my sandworm, and she’d be so whimsically, viciously adorable that I would swoon. Or, maybe, I’d be Columbia and she could be Eddie, or like I could be Jareth and she could be the Worm. Because pets in costumes are AWESOME!

No, I’m not going to make her wear the costume if she obviously hates it. If you slip on a costume and a pet immediately goes immobile, obviously, it ain’t a good thing. I wouldn’t make my pup deal with that. I would never make her wear something that restricts movement, breathing, or sight lines.

So holy crap, I really, really hope that whatever tiny dog I inevitably adopt doesn’t mind cute sweaters and costumes because my SQUEE will be never ending.

— Patty TempletonHate itLet’s face it: These are unwilling subjects. Your dog or cat did not purchase the attachable plush mane to make it look like a lion. It did not ask for a stegosaurus body suit for its birthday. It did not ask for and then be forced into a Santa coat with optional antlers for Christmas. These costumes are strictly for the amusement of humans.

“Oh, but they like it!” Why, because they do not chew at it and/or whimper the whole time? Pretty low bar for liking something.

We put pets in costumes because it’s cute. And the big reason it’s cute is because they have no idea how silly they look, the pet equivalent of someone waking up with a part of the human anatomy written on their forehead. We put animals in costumes because it makes them look more like humans. How vain.

It may be fun for you, but it’s not fun for them, other than the excitement they’re responding to from you. So have all the fun you want making fun of your pets. But if they had any idea, they’d hate it, too.

— David Holub


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