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Halloween pet costumes

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Animal costumes are a rite of passage for dog owners every Halloween. And there is no shortage of inspiration on the Internet or in the pet store.

"I would say the dragon is probably my favorite," said Travis Germain of Pet Food Warehouse.

But before you pick out the perfect outfit for your little monster experts say you should keep a close eye on size distracting accessories.

"You want to make sure it's not something that's going to be too big and interfere with them walking or running," said Germain.

Pets need to be able to keep pace while going door to door for tricks and treats.

But waiting until All-Hallows-Eve to test out the new look isn't such a good idea.

"I recommend putting the costume on ahead of time and letting them wear it ever so often," suggested Germain. "Then you can have them get used to it so when Halloween comes around it's not such a sudden shock to your dog."

Whether it's a statement piece or just a bit of flare, a fashion show at the store is always a fun idea.

My dog Teddy seemed pretty into the big bad wolf costume.

Some critters will walk out of the store high stepping in their new look, but for others it isn't so easy. Especially for big guys like Dozer.

"They don't make them big enough they usually make them big enough for a medium-size yellow lab," said great dane owner Siobhan Philbin. 

Reporter Molly Smith: Do you feel discriminated against?

"No. He wouldn't cooperate anyway," said Philbin. 

So if you've got a big dog you may have to get creative.  

"He has anxiety," Philbin said of his great dane Dozer. "So, I have a thunder shirt and I put him in the thunder shirt that says 'property of the insane asylum.' So it was his costume and he stayed calm.

"This year is his first Halloween and I just like a pumpkin," owner Katelyn Blades said of her boxer/lab, rottweiler.

Reporter Molly Smith: What gave you that inspiration?

"I was looking around and I saw they had a cute little hat so I put that on him," said Blades. 

The experts say don't get discouraged if it doesn't go over well at first. There is always bribery.

"A lot of treats and rewards when the costume is on can help because then they associate it with rewards and treats," said Germain.

If you really think about it, they probably deserve the extra treats for putting up with us this time of year.

Photos were submitted by Channel 3 viewers.

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