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.
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 and a “human-dog duo” costume contest. (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