Halloween Pet Safety
By Pam Small
There are many things that can be hazardous to our pets during the Halloween celebrations. We all like to join in on the fun but we need to be responsible when doing so with our pets. Just like we don’t want kids trick or treating without flashlights, we don’t want harm to befall our furry friends. Here are some things to consider this Halloween season.
When meeting and greeting those trick or treaters, think safety first. Our pets can get anxious or excited by the people arriving at our door. You may want to consider a pet gate in the doorway to insure they cannot squeeze out the door in all the excitement and get lost and confused by all the activity and sounds of Halloween. If a gate is not an option you can keep them in another room or on a leash so that you can ensure they stay close. We would not recommend leaving them outside in the yard as this can also be stressful for them. For those outside dogs we would recommend bringing them inside the house or garage for the duration of the night to help them to remain calm and safe.
When considering all those adorable pet costumes we need to remember that not all pets like to wear them. Some become anxious and this can add to an already stressful situation for our pet. So if you choose to get them dressed up you may want to take those photos and then allow them to take the costume off. For those that do enjoy those costumes keep in mind comfort and ensure that they can see and move with ease. Trying on costumes before the big night is a great way to make sure your pet can move and see well with it on and to gauge their comfort level.
We also need to keep in mind the treats we have out. Many are not safe for our pets. Chocolate is toxic to pets as most of us know but the wrappers can be hazards too. If consumed, they can cause obstructions and trauma to their gastrointestinal tracts. There are also hazards in sugar-free candy choices. Many contain xylitol which is toxic to our pets. Other sugary sweets can cause upset stomachs in our pets even if they are non-toxic so it’s best to keep all treats far away from your pets.
Other trick and treating worries are glow sticks. These are great for keeping our kids safe and seen but not so good for our pets. The substance inside is toxic to pets so if they bite into one they can ingest it and become ill. It is best to keep these far away for them. We would not recommend letting pets wear them either as this can encourage them to chew at them.
When we are thinking about all those decorations we should remember a few things; keep electrical cords safely tucked away to prevent trip hazards as well as preventing them from being chewed on. Battery powered decorations can be hazardous if the batteries become separated and chewed on. And if swallowed they can cause harm to your pets. Also when using candles we want to ensure any open flames are far from our pets reach to prevent any burns.
And last but not least, it’s also a very good idea to keep your pets ID tags on and up to date just in case you do become separated from them. If they are microchipped, make sure to have this information and a current photo somewhere easy to find in case you need to file a lost pet report.
So remember to have a Happy and Safe Halloween for you and your pets!!