Dear Redlands Pups:
Halloween is just around the corner, and there are places to go and things to do right here in Redlands! Here are two events I’ve heard about so far to strut your stuff in your best costume.
3rd Annual Redlands Dog Park Howl’oween- Costume Contest and Festival
Northwest corner of Ford Park. Visit website for a map. October 27, 2:00-6:00 pm
Halloween Bootique- Spooky treats, ghoulish toys, boo-tiful costumes, & frightful fashion. There’s a “Most bootiful of all” pet costume party with a chance to win prizes. Petco 27580 West Lugonia Avenue October 26 at 2 pm
Halloween itself is really about the kids, but you still have a job to do. Hopefully you can see out a window to spot trick-or-treaters. I like to give them a bark to let them know I’m watching. I think it’s working because we have yet to have a trick played on us!
So what about costumes? In my opinion, some are OK, some aren’t. Some preserve our dignity, some don’t. My favorite costume was the year that I was “Super Dog!” It’s hard to go wrong with a superhero costume. Unfortunately it was so hot on Halloween that year that I only wore it long enough to get my picture taken. My only other costume has been my Halloween t-shirt. I call it my LBT—little black tee. With the lightweight knit fabric, I can spot trick-or- treaters through a bedroom window, and then race to the front door before they have a chance to knock.
What I don’t recommend is a costume or styling that makes you uncomfortable or undignified (unless it will win you a valuable prize at a costume contest—think TREATS!). If you’re staying home, try to draw a line on what you’re willing to wear. If your owner is persistent, try using the techniques you use to avoid a bath. Chewing, fussing, and whining may also get results. Just don’t use your “cute” looks—then you’ll have to stay in your costume AND your owner will pull out a camera and blind you with the flash.
Warning: You should avoid eating chocolate at all costs. It isn’t good for you, and you could end up at the “V-E-T.” My trick is to always remember that I like savory foods—pizza, hot dogs, possums, etc. No sweets for me, nor do I like bitter-tasting things. Chocolate will typically present itself in either a sweet or bitter form. Never savory.
My owner found this info on the World Wide Interweb:
What Makes Chocolate Poisonous to Dogs? Chocolate is made from cocoa, and cocoa beans contain caffeine and a related chemical compound called theobromine, which is the real danger. The problem is that dogs metabolize theobromine much more slowly than humans, according to Denver veterinarian Kevin Fitzgerald, PhD.
There was more, but this isn’t a medical column. In a nutshell, you just need to hang on until Thanksgiving, a holiday devoted to savory table scraps and leftovers!
Final topic—cats. If you’ve read my other columns, you know there’s nothing I want to do more than chase away my neighborhood cats. But on Oct. 31, cats are at their most vulnerable. I know it’s hard, but if you have a cat in your household or your neighborhood, try to leave them in peace. Once November begins they are once again fair game for barking and chasing!