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9 ways to keep your pet safe on Halloween

Halloween safety

Halloween is a fun time of year for humans, but that isn’t always the case for your pets. A parade of strangers in even stranger outfits ringing the doorbell can cause anxiety, and there are a number of threats to them – human and otherwise – on Halloween night. Follow these safety tips below for a safer and happier Halloween Night for your pets!

1. Keep your pets away from chocolate. Between visitors, store these treats where your pets can’t reach them. Even in miniscule doses, ingesting chocolate can be fatal to cats and dogs. Make sure your kids know not to share their treats with their furry friends!

2. Candies and candy wrappers are also unsafe for cats and dogs. An artificial sweetener called xylitol is an ingredient in many mainstream candies, and it’s poisonous for many animals. Wrappers can also be a threat to pets, causing life-threatening bowl obstructions if ingested.

3. Some people choose to give out boxes of raisins at Halloween as a healthier alternative to candy. This is a great idea for trick-or-treaters, but they are very poisonous for dogs and must be kept out of their reach. Same thing for grapes! Both are very toxic for canines.

4. Want to offer pet-friendly treats for your furbabies on Halloween night? Consider wet food, extra-moist chewy cat treats, dog biscuits with peanut butter on top, unsalted and unbuttered popcorn, fruit or carrots. They’ll love you for thinking of them!

5. Keep a close eye on wires or cords for decorative lights – many dogs and cats like to chew on them and could suffer serious injuries as a result of the electric current. Either tuck the cords behind furniture where they can’t be reached, or keep a close eye on your pets if wires are out in the open.

6. Cats are drawn to anything interesting that they can chew, so glowsticks pose a threat to your feline friends. While eating glowsticks is not usually fatal for cats, it causes them pain and irritation, as well as excessive drooling and foaming at the mouth. Put them away in a drawer or on a high shelf when not wearing them.

7. Just in case your pets do make a break for it on Halloween night, ensure that all your furbabies have proper, up-to-date ID and/or a microchip. If your pet escapes and becomes lost, these forms of ID are the best way for people to know how to reunite you with your beloved pet.

8. All the noise and activity of Halloween can trigger anxiety responses in pets – it’s best to keep your furry companions in a quiet, closed room or covered crate during trick-or-treating hours so they don’t get agitated or run outside. Consider a TV or some calming music to mask all the noise, and talk to your kids about not scaring, harassing or otherwise abusing animals on Halloween.

9. If you choose to dress your animal up for Halloween, make sure that there are no dangly items like bells or buttons that they might choke on. Same goes for your children’s costumes – pets like to attack dangly things. Also, take note if your pet is resisting dress-up time – if so, respect your animal’s preference not to dress up. Try a thematic collar or bandanna instead. And remember that your pets may not recognize you in costume!

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