Canine costume events are popping up like pumpkins all over Northern California, and you won't have to drive far to find one. Most benefit a good cause, meaning you don’t have to feel bad about dressing your dog up like the devil he sometimes can be. Here’s our short list of Halloween pet events; click here to find many more.
On Friday, the place to be with your gussied-up pooch is Paws & Claws in Oakland, where the 8th Annual Dimond Howl-o-Ween Pet Parade at 6 p.m. will be followed by an outdoor party with campfire and raffle prizes. (A $5 donation benefits ODOG, an all volunteer group that advocates for more dog parks and off-leash space in the East Bay.)
On Saturday, head to Point Isabel Regional Shoreline for Barktoberfest, an annual event highlighted by a costume parade and contest featuring prizes from local merchants. Also on Saturday, the 25th Annual Piedmont Avenue Halloween Celebration in Oakland will be include a 1 p.m. costume parade for dogs and people, a “human-dog duo” costume contest and a party at the Paws On Piedmont store. (Proceeds go to the Maine Coon cat rescue group, which will have a photo booth at Piedmont Plaza in the afternoon.)
Topping off Saturday celebrations, Topel Tasting Room in Healdsburg celebrates its fourth annual Dogtoberfest, a benefit for the Healdsburg Animal Shelter featuring a pet-portraitist, a dog psychic, waived tasting fees, live music and release of a 2012 calendar showcasing photos submitted by winery visitors.
And there’s more! At 3 p.m. Sunday, AnnaBee’s Doggie Boutique & Cafe in Pacifica is sponsoring a Spook-tacular Doggy Costume Contest and Party featuring prizes for most creative, scariest and best human/pet coordinating costumes. In San Francisco, pet-friendly Kimpton Hotels is hosting A Very Fashionable Howl-o-Ween event at 3 p.m. on the lawn of the Argonaut Hotel. It too includes prizes for the best costumes on critters with wet noses.
Photos: "Howl-A-Ween" - Paws & Claws, Oakland
"Joy the Devil Dog" - Deborah Frane