While we make much about the merchandise directed at our pups come Halloween, humans regularly put their canines in clothing long before dog parades began to proliferate a decade or two ago.
Look to those solemn Victorian photographs of the late 1800s, where the style of the day was never to smile, though no one told the dressy dog in the picture that rule (he always had his tongue out or a rascally expression).
But dressing up one's pet has gone far beyond the random bowtie, as the Haute Dog Howl'oween Parade now shows. The Long Beach strut regularly attracts over 500 dogs, making it far and away one of the largest of the Halloween hound parades anywhere (it is, in fact, billed as the largest in the world).
A red carpet, cameos by pageant winners, and fans who show up merely to get a glimpse of the muttly fashions lend the day an out-sized, slightly outlandish feel.
You can feel it, too, alongside your Fido, on Sunday, Oct. 26.
Can you and Pupsies still join? You can, for twenty dollars, in cash, at the event itself. Should you coordinate your outfit with hers? Many people do, sometimes doing a whole group effort with the four-footed one as the main attraction (think Dorothy, Tin Man, Scarecrow, all human, and the dog playing the Cowardly Lion, an actual group costume from a few years back).
Will your sign-up fee lend the love to adoption and rescue groups and spay and neuter efforts? Ruff. (That's affirmative in Dogese.)
Is it free to watch, if you don't have a dressable dog at home, or a pup who doesn't want to participate? Ruff, again.
And do a number of waggers arrive via wagons that are decorated to complement the costume of the canine within? That's one of the most charming sights of a charming day out.
Halloween is still a few days off, but the Haute Dog Howl'oween Parade is that quintessential small town good time, only multiplied by, well, just about 500 dogs.