Halloween is fast approaching and by following a few common-sense guidelines, you can keep your furry goblins safe for another year. Here’s what we recommend:
- Try to minimize sounds and escape opportunities. Animals are always in tune to changes in their environment and can be stressed by the wave of visitors at the door. If weather permits, it is a good idea to sit outside to meet the trick or treaters to minimize the amount of doorbell rings. If this isn’t possible, give your pet a quiet environment away from the visitors to protect them from any stress or harm and to protect your visitors from any possible bites or scratches. When excited, your pet may dart out the open door and become lost or get hurt—it’s best to just keep them away from the trick or treating area altogether for their protection.
- Always keep candy and treats out of reach of pets. Some ingredients are toxic to animals and could kill them. Xylitol, for example, is used as a sugar-free sweetener and is highly toxic to dogs. Even a small amount can cause low blood sugar, seizures, liver failure, or even death. Chocolate can also be a hazard to your pets. It contains theobromine which can cause restlessness, hyperactivity, nervousness, trembling, vomiting, diarrhea, increased drinking and urination, increased heart rate, muscle tremors, seizures and possibly death. Though this affects mainly dogs, cats and other pets can suffer from theobromine poisoning. Candy wrappers are a hazard for all pets and can cause bowel obstructions and are especially enticing to felines. Cats and kittens will often reach right into the candy dish to find the most pleasing piece to bat about the room. It’s better to give kitty a new toy and keep the dish covered than to have an emergency vet appointment or step on hard candy in the middle of the night.
- Get a costume your pet will appreciate. If you are dressing your pet up in costume, make sure it is the correct size for your pet and that it does not cause your pet any undue stress. Some pets don’t like coverings near their heads and ears (think of the cone of shame) and may do better in a festive body costume. Dogs tend to be more forgiving of having an owner dress them up, but a cat can learn that it is safe if you take the time to help them adapt to the outfit. If your pet fights it, stop! It is more important that your pet feel safe and secure at this exciting time than it be dressed as a pirate or princess.
And don’t forget that fleas and ticks are still active for at least another month, so you will want to protect your pets a bit longer. We do have Bravecto and Nexgard in stock for your flea and tick needs, so stop by if you need to get another dose.
Have a happy, safe Halloween!