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Keeping Your Pet Safe This Halloween

Halloween is a fun time filled with witches and ghosts. The holiday can be festive and enjoyable for your pet as well. However, you do need to take some necessary precautions to keep your pet safe on Halloween. The following are some tips to ensure it is a happy and safe holiday for both you and your pet:

• No treats for your pet. While it may be tempting to share your Halloween loot with a beloved pet, the candy may actually be very harmful. Many candies contain an artificial sweetener, xylitol, which can cause serious medical problems if eaten by pets. And, of course chocolate is very dangerous for dogs and cats. Instead purchase a special treat designed specifically for animals so that your pet can enjoy the holiday right along with you.

• Ingesting decorative plants can cause your pet to have an upset stomach. While non-toxic, pumpkins and the decorative corn that we often use for the holiday can cause stomach irritation when nibbled by pets.

• Costumes only for willing pets. Let’s face it, the pet costumes are difficult to resist. However, dressing your pet in costume can be a disaster and a struggle. For those pets that are resistant to wear a costume, don’t push the issue and you and your pet will both have an enjoyable holiday. If you do to choose to go the pet costume route and the pet is compliant, make sure the costume does not restrict the animal’s movement. Pet costumes also should not restrict hearing, seeing or the ability to vocalize. Also, ensure that the costume has no dangling parts that your pet could get caught on, leading to injury.

• The ongoing line of trick-or-treaters can become too much for even the most docile pet, as stranger after stranger comes to the door. This can be frightening and induce stress in your pet, so consider putting your pet in a separate room, away from the door.

Following these simple tips will keep your pet safe and happy this Halloween.

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