Lucy McCauslandLucy McCausland remembers her first pet, Muffy, a small dog her family loved when she and her sisters were children. Years later her love of animals led her to take up horseback riding, and raising dogs and cats of her own. As Lucy developed her career, managing large retail stores, serving as CFO for a large retail chain, and as VP of Finance for a major catalogue retailer, she also developed a strong desire to combine her business talents with her love of animals. And in 2003, she opened a.k.a. spot, in the Clarendon section of Arlington, the hottest neighborhood in the DC metropolitan area.
Pet boutique, doggy grocery, and doggy self-wash, a.k.a. spot has outgrown its original location, and now has a new home just a few blocks away in a larger, more comfortable space. The Bark magazine has called a.k.a. spot "The Ralph Lauren of pet boutiques," and the shop is widely known as one of the very finest retailers of unique, premium pet supplies in the United States. In addition to its retail offerings, a.k.a. spot also serves the community, hosting regular adoption days, sponsoring local animal welfare organizations, scheduling annual portrait sessions for customers with acclaimed photographer Amanda Jones, and coordinating the annual Howl-o-ween doggy parade and costume contest through Clarendon.
Hosting this annual event has provided Lucy with a great education on costume planning and preparation, with a strong emphasis on safety, creativity, and finding the right costume for each and every pet. Each year the event grows bigger and better, and, while it's hard work pulling it all together, it's also very rewarding to see people and pets bonding and interacting, making new friends and coming up with dazzling new costumes.
Lucy McCausland: Hi I am Lucy McCausland from AKA spot. We are a dog store in Ellington, Virginia and we are here today to talk about how to dress your dog for Halloween. In this chapter, we are going to talk a little bit about group ensemble or joint costume which are always so much fun during the parade. They make it special for everybody. And I am here today with Jessica, and Stuart Big, and Beckitt and they are dressed as bride and groom. And then this is little Champ and Johnmo and they are part of a village people outfit. So as you can see it's quite fun and you can really have a great time with it. One of the reasons you might consider doing this kind of a thing where you go as a group and you may even want to wear an outfit that matches the group ensemble. One of the reasons you might consider doing this kind of a thing is it really draws a lot of attention and you are definitely shoe-in for a prize in the costume contest.
We also have a little clip of the Bumble Bee joint outfit which the dogs always look cute in the Bumble Bee outfit. And then you can dress up as a Big Bumble Bee and walk around during that parade. And then we also had a really, really great outfit in one of the parades, and it was basically the couple as a New York skyline and their dog was a yellow cat. So you can see that that's the kind of a thing that really draws attention from the judges. So the main thing you want to remember is if you do a group ensemble outfit that all the dogs have net prior to the parade. Hi! Stuart. And that they all get along. And you probably want to get them all together and do a little dry run off the parade before you go out with the big group of dogs. The other thing you have to remember is control of your dog, you must have the same control of your dog as you would on a normal day. So get the outfits on and then go ahead and put the harnesses indeed, the powers that you normally use and make sure that they function with the costumes. Additionally, the dogs have to be able to perform all the manly functions that they normally do which will include drinking, and peeing, etcetera. So you can see it's a great category, you can be really creative and definitely rack in the prizes. So that's how you make a group ensemble or joint outfit for the parade. Enjoy!