Halloween marks the beginning of the holiday season, and kids and adults alike look forward to this fun time of year. After all, what could be better than costumes, pumpkins, and of course – candy?
For our pets, this beloved fall holiday can be fraught with danger. Here at Volunteer Veterinary Hospital, we see cases of pet poisonings, missing pets, and other emergency situations every year around this time. Preventing dangerous situations for your pet means being aware of the many ways they can get into trouble, and we are here to help! Check out our Halloween pet safety tips for a healthier, safer, and less scary holiday for your furry loved ones.
Chocolate, and Beyond!
All candy should be off-limits to pets, but chocolate and anything sweetened with Xylitol are the worst offenders (both are extremely toxic to pets). Keep the candy bowl out of reach, and make sure the kids sort through their goodies at the table or counter rather than the living room rug. Offer your pet a healthy snack such as a chunk of apple or a handful of plain popcorn to munch while the kids eat their goodies.
Costumes – Yay or Nay?
There’s no denying that a costumed pet is adorable, but not all pets enjoy wearing clothing and in some cases it can be dangerous. Before putting that villain or superhero costume on your pet, make sure it meets the following criteria:
- It does not compromise your pet’s vision, airways, hearing, or restrict movement in any way
- There are no small or dangling parts that can be chewed off and swallowed
- Your pet seems to feel comfortable and is behaving normally while wearing the costume.
It wouldn’t be Halloween without Jack-o-lanterns and other festive decor. Keep an eye on Halloween pet safety in this area by making sure there are no live candles near your pets, and that any wires or electrical decorations are secured out of their reach. Animatronics can be very scary for some pets, so use these decorations only outdoors and with caution.
The Big Night
The constant doorbell ringing and the sight of tiny costumed humans can be tough for even the most laid-back pet. Keep your pets in an out of the way room where they can relax with their food, water, and bedding during the festivities. Never leave a pet outdoors on Halloween – it’s easy for pets to escape or be stolen.