5 Reasons Not to Dress Up Your Dog...Not even for Christmas

I could just as easily have titled this blog, "1,000 Reasons Not to Dress Up Your Dog...Not Ever" or even "1,000,000 Reasons Not to Dress Up Your Dog...Lest You Tempt the Anger of God" but I figured 5 reasons would probably get the point across.

I love animals. Love 'em. Mrs. Rogue and I have two cats and a large dog by the name of Otis. Otis is a junkyard dog. He's Catahoula Cur and Pit Bull mix, weighs in excess of 65 pounds and has a bent stub of a tail from where his previous owner tried to clip it. He would just look silly (and probably pissed) in a doggy costume.

It's a little disconcerting because every year I forget that this is even a problem and then Halloween comes and the aisles at the local superstore are filled with little doggy devils and pooch princesses. Then I am reminded that not only are we the only species on earth that shames and belittles others like us, but we also visit that same ridicule on the species we have subjugated.

Let's just make a new rule: If the animal isn't big enough to put a saddle on then you shouldn't decorate them in other ways, deal?

5. The cat will make fun of him. -- Let's face it, cats are a lot smarter than dogs. Dogs are our unquestioning partners and loyal followers, but cats only live with us in as much as it helps them. Why further add to the disdain your cat shows your dog by making him (or her) wear a reminder of their subjugation? Let's just skip the pageantry and paint "Slave" across the dog's side.

4. It's so much harder for him to lick the really tasty body parts. -- For dog lovers, you already know that one of the main joys a dog has in life is licking his unmentionables. Why would you make it difficult for him to reach those nether regions by putting a big clown nose on his snout or tying him up with a cape? If you could lick yourself (and assuming it was socially acceptable) wouldn't it piss you off if someone put a costume in your way?

3. It will make him think he's not your ideal pet. -- The Dog is a noble creature, domesticated by early man to aid in the hunt and to provide security and companionship for his family. Do we really need to dress him up like a Reindeer? Everybody loves Rudolph, but I've got news for you. Reindeer are notoriously gassy, and that glowing nose would get on any body's nerves after a while. Why mock the centuries of service your dog and his ancestors have provided by hinting (even as a joke) that you'd rather have a pet reindeer?

2. It is NOT the way to spend your limited holiday budget. -- Sure, you may think those Christmas cards with Spot wearing antlers are hilarious, and will brighten your friends day. You know what would really brighten their day? A better Christmas present. Take the forty bucks you spent getting Spot groomed, the fifteen dollars you spent on his costume and the sixty bucks you spent on the photography session and BUY BETTER GIFTS! Nobody cares about Christmas cards (except your Grandmother and her next door neighbor, and they are going to be very suspicious of your hairy new significant other) so save the dough and get what they really want, gift cards.

1. They may hold it against us. -- A millennia from now when evolved dogs and cats are our imperial overlords do you want to add "Made us wear silly costumes" to their laundry list of grievances with the human race? I know sitting here in the early part of the twenty-first century this idea seems ludicrous but so did traveling to the moon a hundred years ago. Even if you accept that it is possible that bipedal canines and felines might one day rule us "Planet of the Apes" style, you may still think it's not our problem as we will all be long dead. But I beg you, think of the children, and put DOWN the doggy Santa suit!