Eli the Chihuahua in Pope's costume picture

Jeanne Noonan, New York Daily News

Eli the chihuahua, a celebrated doggy model, caused a commotion when he dressed up as Pope Benedict XVI for this year's Times Square Dog Day Masquerade event in New York City.

Photographers clamored to photograph the tiny Chihuahua wearing a splendid red-and-gold robe and mirtre. "People reacted so strongly to his costume," Eli's owner, Karen Biehl, told Paw Nation. "They loved it. He was photographed all day long."

Was anyone offended by Eli's costume? "Not one person had a problem with it," Biehl said. "In fact, the people that seemed to like it the most were people who were Catholic."

Biehl's inspiration for the doggy pope outfit came from a large gold cross she had purchased earlier in the year. "I thought, 'Eli would make a really good pope!'" Biehl said. "Eli's really good at wearing hats and he tends to look regal, so I thought that he would be perfect for the costume." Biehl sent photographs of the real pope to her friend and doggy fashion designer, Roberto Negrin, who made the costume for Eli.

Believe it or not, Biehl has another costume planned for the many Halloween events that she and Eli will be attending this year. "I'm going to dress him up as Michael Jackson," Biehl said. "Roberto made the jacket, and I made a silver glove and a Michael Jackson wig." Now that we gotta see.

Tell us, will you be dressing up your pets this Halloween season?

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