How to Dress a Dog for Christmas


Christmas is a time to celebrate, so don’t leave your dog out of the festivities -- let him shine by dressing up for the merriment. Costumes and formal wear can be found in pet stores, online boutiques and even custom-made for your pooch. Find what is best for your four-legged friend, get dressed up and snap lots of photos to remember their special outfit. Better yet -- take her for her own photo with Santa.


  • Headpieces are an entertaining, festive way to dress up your dog for the holidays. This option works well for dogs that do not mind wearing things on their heads for an extended period of time. Antlers are readily available at most pet stores. Look for a set with a Velcro strap around the chin -- as opposed to an elastic strap -- so you can better adjust the fit. Your dog can be Santa’s little helper by donning an elf hat, with or without elf ears. Select headpieces that are lightweight so the dog is more likely to ignore it while it is on his head.

Santa Outfits

  • A Santa or Mrs. Claus costume is a holiday classic. Opt for a simple Santa hat or dress your pooch up in a coat, boot and a beard. Mrs. Claus dresses are available to purchase or patterns exist to sew to a custom fit. If your dog does not like to wear full shirts or coats, you can put him in a red and white cape or cloak. Find a costume that is proportionate for your dog. A Chihuahua may need a Santa hat and a velvet skirt for her costume, while a large, black Labrador can don Santa coat with a belt, beard and boots.

Collars and Harnesses

  • Collar and harness manufacturers produce Christmas-themed products. The collars and harnesses use nylon or ribbon printed with candy canes, Christmas trees and other cheerful graphics. Visit holiday craft shows for homemade collars made with poinsettias, plush velvet fabrics, felt cut outs and jingle bells. Changing your dog’s collar or harness to a simple green or red can also show Christmas spirit.

Formal Wear

  • Take the formal route on Christmas Eve or Christmas day or for holiday family photos by dressing your dog in formal wear. Velvet dresses with fur trim are obtainable for girl dogs in cranberry, gold, black and white hues. Accessories such as shoes and jewelry are available to match the dresses. A variety of formal styles are also available for male dogs, ranging from a full tuxedo, simple bow ties, top hats or morning suits. Dress your boy in a smart-looking vest to celebrate. Check specialty dog boutiques for formal wear options. The sizing is usually determined by breed or the weight of the dog.

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