Halloween is a fun time to enjoy with family and pets. Cute costumes and festivities can distract you from possible risks to your pets. To ensure a great Halloween, here are some things you can do to keep your pets safe. Remember, Halloween Safety for you and your pet is responsible.
- Don’t Leave Pets in the Yard on Halloween
On Halloween evenings, lots of people are on the street. Leaving your dog or other pet in the yard during this time can cause lots of excitement. Even though that may seem fun, too much excitement can make a pet aggressive. Also, unwanted pets from strangers through gates and fences can be dangerous to a nervous pet. You also run the risk of unwanted candies making their way into the yard.
2. Keep Candies in Hard-to-Reach Places
Whether it’s your bowl of candy for trick-or-treaters or snacks for visitors, make sure you keep all candies out of your pet’s reach. Chocolate can make dogs very ill, especially dark chocolates and baking chocolates. Sugar-free candies containing xylitol (artificial sweetener) are toxic for both cats and dogs. Some candies and packaging are also choking hazards. Keep your pet safe by keeping candies out of reach.
3. Hide Glow Sticks from Pets
Glow sticks are a fun and popular accessory for so many Halloween costumes. They help children be more visible while walking outdoors, but they can pose a risk to pets. Although the liquid inside is not toxic, if ingested, your pet may vomit. The mess would be an unwelcome addition to a fun night. The dye can damage furniture, carpets and flooring.
4. Keep Pets Calm
With doorbells ringing, people coming in and out, and scary costumes, pets may become afraid. Keep pets calm by confining them to one room or away from the front door so that people may come and go. If your pet is truly afraid of too much commotion, consider placing a sign on the door that says to knock or place a bowl of candy out on your stoop to keep people from ringing the bell. Causing unwanted chaos for your pet is never ideal.
5. Have Proper Identification on Pets
Keep pets properly tagged and visible during Halloween. Whether they are taking a potty break in the yard or joining your family for trick-or-treating, it’s important to keep them safe. If something was to happen, being properly ID’d will increase the chances of them being found and returned to you.
6. Think Through a Pet Costume
Some pet costumes, although cute, are uncomfortable. Don’t cause your dog or cat unwanted stress by making them wear an uncomfortable costume. We suggest testing the costume in the store or days before Halloween to see if your dog will tolerate it. That way, you can still return the costume if your pet doesn’t want to wear it. Try to find costumes your dog can easily relieve themselves while wearing. It will save you the hassle of having to remove it regularly.
7. Keep Decorations Out of Reach
Lights with wires, glitter decorations and fake pumpkins/food all serve as hazards to pets. Make sure these enticing, chewable distractions are kept out of reach. Try to find decorations that hang on the wall, doors or banisters versus sit on the floor or table tops. Jack-o-Lanterns should have electric candles if a pet has any access to them. Spilled wax can be a burn hazard.
8. Have Vet Contact Info or ASPCA Poison PCC Number Accessible
Keep emergency contacts at the ready. The risk for dogs who eat chocolate and other animal emergencies are heightened on Halloween. Don’t leave anything to chance this holiday!
9. Try to Regulate Noise Level
Again, in an effort to keep pets calm indoors, make them comfortable. No scary music, strobing lights or other over-the-top decor should be in the home. This can cause your pets enough stress to make them afraid and possibly even run away.
10. Be on the Lookout for Lost Pets
Pets can get lost in the chaos of Halloween just because it is so busy. Dogs and cats alike can become agitated by the unusual schedule and late visits by strangers. Keep an eye out for lost pets and have numbers for the non-emergency police line and local shelter ready in case your pet goes missing or you find a stray pet.
The FlexPetz team hopes everyone has a safe and happy Halloween!