Dog in witch hat with two jack-o-lanterns carved as dog-o-lanterns with Barking Princess logo

Dog-O-Lanterns, cookies and witch hats for Halloween

Everyone loves seeing their dog all dressed up in a cute Halloween costume.  There are so many adorable dog costumes out there, who can resist taking photos and sharing them on Instagram and Facebook. But remember, some dogs hate being dressed up. Pay attention to the signs your dog is giving you. Be respectful of your dog’s comfort and everyone will be happy.

Here are a few ides to celebrate Halloween with your dog whether he’s one who hates dressing up, or if he or loves it.

Carve Breed Specific Dog-O-Lanterns 

Show everyone in your neighborhood just how much you love your dog by carving a Halloween Dog-O-Lantern to sit on the front step. 

Better Homes and Gardens has some adorable breed specific stencils you can download for free. There are lots to choose from or if you are skilled at drawing, try your hand at making your own.

Keep it pet-safe and use a mini LED light inside instead of a candle.

To help your Dog-O-Lantern last a little longer, rub Vaseline all over it. Pay special attention to the carved out areas. When your pumpkin dries out, that’s when it starts to shrink. But if you want it to keep its shape, this trick works great. Hairspray works well too. 

Bake Pumpkin Dog Cookies 

What dog doesn’t love a good homemade pumpkin cookie? Bake a batch for your dog and his four-legged friends.

Here’s a recipe combining the goodness of pumpkin, oats and coconut that we love!

Ingredients:

1 ½ c    rolled oats

¼ c       unsweetened all-natural coconut chips (not the sweetened shredded kind with nothing added)

¼  c      creamy peanut butter (make sure it does not contain xylitol which is toxic to dogs and is found in sugar free items.  Some good brands to choose are Earth Balance, Simple Truth, MaraNatha)

½ c       pumpkin puree (fresh or canned, but make sure nothing is added)

½ tsp   cinnamon

½ tsp    baking powder

1            egg

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Line cookie sheet with wax paper.

Combine oat and coconut in mini food processor. Pulse for 30-45 seconds then place in a bowl

Add cinnamon and baking powder to the oat and coconut mixture

Mix together the peanut butter, pumpkin puree and egg and add to the dry ingredients.

Roll out ½ inch thick.

Cut with cookie cutters.  Bones, pumpkins or leaf shapes are fun to use.

Bake for 15-18 minutes.

Allow to cool completely and store in an airtight container

DIY Halloween Witch Hats (if your dog doesn’t mind dressing up a little)

If your dog doesn’t mind wearing a hat, at least long enough for a photo or two, make matching DIY Witch Hats for you and your dog.  All you need are a few pieces of black felt, some festive embellishments and a glue gun.  DIY Network has a pattern to get you started.  Decorate it to your liking to make it your own.  A little corded black elastic works great to keep the hat in place.

Halloween Flower Crowns 

Again, for those of us whose dogs enjoy this sort of thing, flower crowns are a lot of fun. They take a little time, so make sure you have an hour or so to work on your crowns, but they are really easy and relaxing to make. Flower crowns make a really cute and simple costume and look adorable in photos. Be careful with silk flower shavings which can cause eye irritation. Shake, shake, shake your flower crown, before putting it on your dog. 

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