Learn how to give your pets a safe and stress-free Halloween night with our helpful tips.
A simple rule of thumb here is “no candy.” It’s a well-known fact that chocolate is toxic to dogs, but candies that contain the “sugar-free” sweetener xylitol are also poisonous in dogs and possibly ferrets. Candy wrappers and lollipop sticks can present a health threat if ingested, and mini-boxes of raisins that are distributed as healthy snacks also are extremely poisonous to dogs.
Keep Pets Confined and Away from the Door
The constant ringing of the doorbell can be stressful for your pets—never mind strangers dressed in costumes yelling, “Trick or Treat!” Keep your dog or cat in a secure place away from the front door. This is particularly important for dogs who are guarded with strangers or who may have a tendency to bite. Even dogs who are typically friendly may become anxious or unfriendly when stressed. Keeping pets away from your door will also prevent them from escaping into the night.
Keep Pets Indoors
For their protection, cats should be kept indoors at all times. Animals can often be at risk for cruel antics by Halloween pranksters.
Glow Sticks and Glow Jewelry
Cats, in particular, like to chew on these. While not toxic, glow sticks and bracelets do have a liquid inside that can cause irritation to the mouth and excessive salivation and drooling.
Candles and Jack-O-Lanterns
Keep lit candles and jack-o-lanterns out of reach of pets. Wagging tails and pets running around the house can accidentally tip over a candle or carved pumpkin, creating a fire hazard.
Pet Safety Clothing
Consider reflective collars and gear for not only you and your children, but also your pets. This is a great safety item for Halloween and throughout the year (e.g., when walking your dog at night).
Make sure your pet is properly identified with a collar, ID tag, and microchip in case they escape while you’re attending to the trick-or-treaters.
Don’t dress pets in costumes unless you know they’ll be comfortable. They may look cute all dressed up, but they may not enjoy it as much as you and the kids. If you dress your pet in a costume, be sure it doesn’t restrict movement, eyesight, or breathing. Your safest bet may be a loosely tied colorful bandana. Also, don’t be tempted to color your pet’s fur. It may be labeled non-toxic to humans, but it could still be harmful to pets.