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National Dress Up Your Pet Day

cat wear captain cap

There’s nothing more adorable than cute pets in gorgeous, fashionable outfits. And what’s better than the whole country doing it together on the National Dress Up Your Pet Day?

The National Dress Up Your Pet is a favorite pet holiday, especially for cats and dog parents as they have a chance to dress up their pets in unique characters. The best part is no one will look at your pet in surprise. Instead, you might just be greeted by other pets in pretty dresses!

Thus, we have compiled everything in this article you need to know about National Dress Up Your Pet Day. It also brings you some interesting and sweet ideas to dress up your pet this year. So, let’s begin with what actually is this day.

What is the National Dress Up Your Pet Day?

The National Dress Up Your Pet Day is an unofficial national holiday across the US, celebrated every year on January 14. Pet parents dress up their pets in costumes, hand-sewn dresses, and accessories. Some also take their pets to the groomer to lift the game a notch. This holiday lets pet parents strengthen their bond with their babies and make memories to cherish.

History of the National Dress Up Your Pet Day

This day is an amazing opportunity to bond with pets, but sometimes people wonder, “Who thought of a specific day to dress up the pets?”

Animal Behaviorist and Celebrity Pet Lifestyle Expert Colleen Paige founded the National Dress Up Your Pet Day in 2009. Now, pet parents across the country celebrate this day as an unofficial holiday annually to dress their pets and meet other pet owners.

Paige started this holiday to encourage bonding between pets and owners and promote their well-being. Thus, it is perfect for you if your pet enjoys wearing a sweater or dressing up in different costumes.

Why Celebrate National Dress Up Your Pet Day?

While many people accessorize their pets regardless of the time of the year, others do not get time to do so. And this holiday is the right chance for those pet parents. It lets them spend more time together looking for costumes and accessories and deciding on the perfect fit.

Though you must take photos if your pet is happy with it, Colleen Paige also mentioned, “It’s important to remember though, that it’s not, however, a day to disrespect our pets with uncomfortable, vulgar and/or seasonally inappropriate costumes for the sake of a laugh or photo shoot.” So, ensure your pet’s comfort as the day is about celebrating them.

cat wear bunny head cap

How to Celebrate National Dress Up Your Pet Day?

Get a Matching Outfit

Dressing up your pet on this holiday is the primary element, but getting matching outfits with your pet is a double treat! Have you seen people twinning with their cats?

You can get a Lilo dress when dressing up your cat as Stitch or get matching striped dresses. Alternatively, Snow-white and the Dwarf, Santa, and the Reindeer, and Flower and Bee are interesting options. Moreover, you may opt for matching accessories if your fur baby does not like putting on an outfit.

Go for a Stroll

It’s National Dress Up Your Pet Day, and you will see everyone with their pets on the street. Other than dogs, cats also love walking with you, so why not take them with you? Take your fur baby, dressed to the best to see other pets and their families.

Involve Your Kids

Kids learn kindness and compassion at a young age, and this holiday is one of the best opportunities to teach them more. Dress up your kids in matching outfits, encourage them to carefully put accessories on your pet, and take pictures. It brings them closer to the pet, and they learn how to treat animals as a part of the family.

Take Pictures with Your Pet

What’s the most important task after dressing up your pet on this day? You got it, take pictures!

Dress Up Your Pet Day is the perfect occasion to take cute pictures with your pet when they slay in those outfits. Pinterest has a number of great ideas that you can opt to adorn your cat and set them in cute poses. Take funny family pictures with pets or design a setup in the backyard for more professional-looking photos.

Arrange a Pet-together

Some neighborhoods have more families with pets than others, and if you have some around, call them over on this holiday. It would be even better to send invitations to families with cats even a little farther away; your fur baby will love their company.

Upload Pictures on Instagram

You must not be surprised that #DressUpYourPetDay and #DressUpYourCat trend on Instagram on January 14 every year. Pet parents bombard the photo-sharing app with thousands of pet pictures on Instagram to look back at these moments later. Upload yours with the same hashtags to join the digital celebration. Bonus points for those having a cat as cats love to grab their owner’s attention!

Ideas to Dress Up Your Cat on National Dress Up Your Pet Day

Selecting the style and outfit is the most critical part of the National Dress Up Your Pet Day celebration. If you are worried about the right cat costume, don’t worry; we’re here to help you. Choose your favorite from those mentioned below or check our list of all ideas to dress up your favorite furry friend on National Dress Up Your Pet Day.

  • Witch cat
  • Flower cat
  • Octopus cat
  • Harry potter costume
  • Nurse costume

Alternatives to Costumes for Your Cat

Cats are typically not happy wearing costumes or multiple pieces of clothing. If your cat belongs to the same category, the best bet is to opt for accessories. They look incredibly sweet and do not bother your pet much. Some of the common choices of accessories for cats include hats, bandannas, fancy harnesses, bows, and sunglasses.

cat wear sunglasses and blue shirt

Tips for Celebrating National Dress Up Your Pet Day

You can explore plenty of tips and tricks about how to celebrate this national dress up your pet day! Enjoy this day to make it memorable with your pet. Here we have given some of the ideas:

  • Dress up your pet only if they are comfortable with the outfit
  • Ensure you get a breathable fabric to prevent overheating
  • Select outfits that let your pet breathe, eat, and play comfortably
  • Avoid ribbons and dangling objects on the costumes to avoid choking hazard
  • If your pet has never worn a costume before, it is best not to leave them in it the whole day
  • Do not buy tightly fitted costumes that may obstruct breathing
  • Do not force your pet if they reject the clothing
  • Do not leave your cat unattended after dressing them up
  • Do not make your pet look or feel miserable

The Bottom Line

The National Dress Up Your Pet Day is one of the most popular pet holidays in the US. Pet parents celebrate this unofficial holiday on January 14 every year by dressing up their pets in cute costumes, getting matching outfits, arranging pet-parent meetups, and taking lots of pictures. While bonding with your pet is a wonderful occasion, it is not compulsory to style your cat if they feel uncomfortable. Your cat’s comfort comes before anything else, and you must not compromise that. Happy holiday!


Do pets like to be dressed up?

Some pets are fine with wearing costumes, while others do not appreciate the idea much. So, you must observe your pet’s feelings and dress them only if they are comfortable.

Why dress up your pet?

Most pet parents dress up their pets to protect them from harsh weather like rain and snow. At the same time, some put their pets in adorable outfits to make them look even cuter.

What do pets think of clothes?

There is no one-answer-fits-all when it comes to pets and their liking for clothes. Dogs wag their tails when they see their favorite outfits, and cats might freeze when they are uncomfortable in a costume. Look for the signs to understand what your pet thinks of clothes.

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