We all love Halloween: silly costumes, loud parties, yummy candy, creepy jack-o’-lanterns, and spooky stories included (seriously, what’s not to love?!). Just because we humans enjoy the thrills and chills that come with the Autumn season doesn’t mean Fido feels the same way. The 31st can be downright stressful for our four-legged companions. To make sure everyone enjoys the spooky festivities, read the following precautions offered by yours truly:

Halloween picture

Spencer, Mika, Deborah Howard, and Beatrice

Picture courtesy of Dietrich Falkenthal

1) First off, keep your pet indoors on Halloween. You might know the ugly ogre is your neighbor’s kid, but your pet doesn’t know that. Also, if your kid wants to show off his awesome pet dressed in ghost garments, trick-or-treating offers a great distraction, making holding the leash less important than picking up delicious candy. If the whole family comes along, let an adult hold the leash.

2) Keep candy out of reach at all times. Chocolate is toxic to dogs and cats and plastic wrappers are a chocking hazard. Offer a tasty, healthy treat instead!

3) If your animal gets easily stressed by the constant trick or treat traffic, keep him or her in a quiet or secluded area of the house. This also keeps your pet from taking a chance and bolting out the door.

4) Don’t dress up your animal if he or she gets bothered by wearing clothing. If you opt for the princess costume, search for possible chocking hazards and make sure your pet can breath, hear, and move properly and comfortably.

5) Costumes, masks and makeup can cause stress in animals. If they get anxious by the unfamiliar, keep them in a different quiet part of the house and do not take them trick or treating with the kids.

6) If you’re using candles or lighting up a jack-o’-lantern, make sure your curious buddy can’t reach the flames- besides being a fire hazard, singed hair isn’t exactly a pleasant smell.
7) If your pet is a chewer, take the necessary precautions to keep Fido from gnawing on electrical chords, fake spider webs, and other chewy yet dangerous decorations.
8 ) At some point in our lives, we’ve all been part of Halloween pranks, either the perpetrator or the victims. Many times, black cats fall prey to mean tricks (thanks to foolish superstitions!). Keep your purring fur ball inside, safe from pesky pranksters.
If you have any other tips, feel free to comment.
Have a spooky, happy, and SAFE Halloween!

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