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15 Adorably Bookish Pet Costumes

Rachel Smalter Hall

Staff Writer

Rachel Smalter Hall may be a professional Book Rioter, but she still hangs out in the public librarian clubhouse. Two of her top three loves include audiobooks and knitting, and her favorite song is Cold Hearted Snake as performed by Alyssa Edwards and Coco Montrese on season 5 of RuPaul’s Drag Race. She co-runs a boozy book club in Lawrence, Kansas, in her spare time. Twitter: @rach_smalls Website: Rachel Smalter Hall

For the record, I have never dressed my pets up in costumes of any kind. But when it comes to bookish pet costumes, that “awwwww” switch turns on in my brain and I’m a goner. Here are 15 of my very favorites:

1. Harry Potter from the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling

harry potter

You might recognize Trotterpup from her fame as “the most fashionable French Bulldog on the internet.” Trotter’s ensembles have included everything from Kanye West disguises to haute couture fashion, but I’m partial to this bookish Harry “Trotter” costume, photographed in her San Francisco home.

2. Gandalf, Frodo, and Galadriel from The Lord of the Rings trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien

lord of the rings

Phillip and Sue Lauer have been dressing up their pugs Blue, Bono, and Roxy at their home in Sonoma County, California, for six years, and drew inspiration from their love of Lord of the Rings for this bookish “Pugs of Middle Earth” photo shoot.

3. Hester Prynne from The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

scarlet letter

Washington, D.C. based photographer Eric Schweik photographed his pup in this costume of Hester Prynne in tribute to American wood carver and dog lover Stephen Huneck after Huneck’s death in 2010.

4. Scarlett O’Hara from Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

gone with the wind

Every October in Tompkins Square Park, hundreds of New York’s East Village dog owners show off their costumed pups to a panel of judges. Gracie the pug is a perennial winner, and here she shows off her winning 2010 Scarlett O’Hara costume, drapes and all.

5. Carol from Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

where the wild things are

Washington based designer Kristal Schwartze hawks adorable monster hats and outfits from her Etsy shop FairlyEnchanted. This Where the Wild Things Are critter costume has already been snatched up, but the good news is that she accepts custom orders.

6. Edward Cullen from Twilight by Stephenie Meyer


Every year, Midtown’s Algonquin Hotel hosts a feline fête for New York’s cat elite, held in honor of the famous Algonquin Hotel cat, Matilda. This Edward Cullen kitty takes the cake, but other standouts from this year’s literary-themed cat fashion show include Madeline, the Mad Hatter, the Scarecrow, annnnd…

7. Raggedy Ann from the Raggedy Ann series by Johnny Gruelle

raggedy ann

 … Raggedy Ann! Just look at that face.

8. Musketeer from The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas

3 musketeers

Washington, D.C. based Etsy shop Marmota Café specializes in rodent-sized capes and costumes for bunnies, chinchillas, Guinea pigs, hamsters, hedgehogs, and more. Because someone had to do it, right? This li’l Three Musketeers Guinea pig costume is my favorite, and I’m also into the White Rabbit cape.

9. Thing 1 and Thing 2 from The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss

cat in the hat

More literary goodness from the Tompkins Square Park Halloween parade, this time with Dr. Seuss’ iconic Thing 1 and Thing 2.

10. Max from How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss

Grinch Who Stole Christmas

Not to be outdone by Thing 1 and Thing 2, this pup costumed as Max from Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas also entered the Tompkins Square Park Halloween contest.

11. The Big Bad Wolf from Little Red Riding Hood by Charles Perrault

little red riding hood

The online shop Costume Works hosts an annual costume contest for Halloween enthusiasts, including a category for pet costumes. Ares, a wolfish Siberian Husky / Malamute mix, took 1st place out of last year’s 2,000+ entries for his adorably bookish Big Bad Wolf costume.

12. The Queen of Hearts from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

alice in wonderland queen of hearts

Ares didn’t have the only literary costume entry in last year’s Costume Works contest. Puppy Zi dressed up as the Queen of Hearts.

13. The Mad Hatter from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

alice in wonderland mad hatter

This American Curl Cat is decked out in a Mad Hatter costume during “Meet the Breeds”, an event co-hosted in mid-October by the American Kennel Club and the Cat Fanciers Association at New York’s Jacob Javits Center.

14. Satyr from The Chronicles of Narnia series by C.S. Lewis


You can thank Indianapolis based designer Kelly Lynn Mitchell for giving this gift to the internet. Although comment threads have debated whether this costume is more Narnia or Where the Wild Things Are -inspired, I think everyone can agree that it’s ADORABLE.

15. Christian Grey from 50 Shades of Grey by E.L. James

fifty shades of grey

Save the best for last, right?! Here’s another priceless costume from the Tompkins Square Park Halloween parade. I’m not here to judge.


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