Jack-o'-lanterns, trick-or-treaters, haunted houses and costume parties. Halloween is full of fun things for you and your family to enjoy, but it's one of those holidays that is enjoyed more by people than by pets.
Keep the following precautions in mind when preparing for the frightfully fun festivities and help ensure that everyone in your family—including your pet—has a safe Halloween.
- As much as your dog or cat may beg for some of your Halloween candy, always remember that chocolate may be deadly to them even in small amounts.
- Keep your pet in a quiet place, away from trick-or-treaters and other Halloween activities. You may know that the miniature monsters and goblins who come knocking on Halloween aren't real, but pets don't. Dogs and cats are creatures of habit and could become frightened or agitated by the unaccustomed sights and sounds of costumed visitors. In addition, frequently opened doors provide a perfect opportunity for escape, which can go unnoticed during all the commotion. Be sure all pets are wearing collars and ID tags in case of an accidental getaway.
- Dogs can have lethal tails, wagging all over the place. Don't leave any lighted candles or Jack-O-Lanterns where they could be knocked over by a swinging tail or by a curious cat. Not only could your pet start a fire but they could severely burn themselves in the process.
- If you are having a indoor party, make sure that you put your dog or cat in a room where they won't be disturbed. Unless your pet is ultra friendly and doesn't mind loud noises, music and lots of people you should keep them separate for the night. Also, be careful your cat or dog doesn't dart out through the open door as you hand out candy. Best bet is to just put them in a crate with some food and water for the night and check on them once in a while to let them know everything is fine.
- Candy wrappers, such as tin foil, can get stuck in your pets digestive tract and make them ill or cause death. There are plenty of recipes for making homemade dog and cat treats, you can always make them their own Halloween treats.
- Don't let the family dog accompany the kids on their trick-or-treat outing. Children may have a difficult time handling a pet during the festivities and your pooch could get loose, especially if your dog is scared by the strange sights and sounds of trick-or-treaters.
- Don't leave your pet outside on Halloween: There are plenty of stories of vicious pranksters who have teased, injured, stolen, even killed pets on this night. Plus with all the things happening that evening it can be more than a little frightening for our animals.
Col. Potter wishes everyone a Happy Halloween!