Halloween and Your Pet

ChildBlackKittenEvery fall, our neighborhoods are overtaken by ghosts and goblins and other scary creatures for a night of fun and tradition. Children love getting dressed up in costume and going door-to-door to collect Halloween treats. There are all kinds of safety tips to protect kids on this night each year, but what about pets?

Our pets crave structure and routine. Anytime we can anticipate a change from our normal routine, we should take into consideration the impact this will have on our pets. Are you ready for Halloween this year?

  • Dogs can especially become frightened by strangers in costume. It is always a good idea to condition your pet to different types of clothing, so they can become accustomed to a variety of different types of clothing. At Bark Tutor School for Dogs, the instructors frequently play “dress-up”, donning an assortment of uniforms, costumes, hats and jackets. This helps socialize dogs to be less fearful of strangers.
  • Be prepared to kennel or crate your dog at least 30 minutes before trick-or-treat begins. The doorbell is going to ring constantly for about two hours, and the safest place for your dog is somewhere familiar and comfortable, away from the front door, which will be open almost constantly that evening.
  • The same is a good idea for your cat. Set them up in a spare bedroom with access to their litter box, food and water. This will prevent any accidental escapes out the front door.
  • Once your children are home for the evening and sorting out the goodies they’ve collected, their candy is a source of danger to your dog. Chocolate, if ingested in a large enough quantity is extremely toxic. Make sure your dog cannot reach your child’s Halloween candy. If your dog finds and eats candy, always contact your veterinarian immediately.
  • Costumes are fun, and pet costumes have become very popular. If your dog or cat are tolerant to being “dressed-up”, take some photos and post them to our Facebook Fan page! When dressing your pet up, it’s important to remember to supervise them at all times. If left alone, pets in costume have been known to chew up their costumes, or become entangled in them while trying to remove them.

We hope everyone has a fun, but safe Halloween this year. A little planning and precaution will go a long way in keeping your pet out of harm’s way, as well as keeping your peace of mind intact. Happy Halloween!

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