Halloween is supposed to be spooky and scary, but it’s also supposed to be all in fun. For our pets, however, the dangers are real. The good news is that with a little preparation, we can keep our beloved fur babies safe and secure while the goblins and ghouls roam the area having a fantastic time being as frightful as they can.
Fireworks are a big part of Halloween in Ireland and Guy Fawkes Day in Great Britian, and they are hard to avoid. Many humans love them, but for dogs they are terrifying and painful. Constant knocks at the door, costumed strangers and even seasonal decorations in the garden can all upset dogs and cats.
The season poses three key threats to our pets.
- Risk of Escape
- Chocolate Poisoning
By developing a solid plan for Halloween pet safety, owners can ensure that their dogs(and cats) stay safe.
Keeping Dogs Calm
Exercise is a great way to burn up nervous energy, and it promotes a sense of calm. But if you normally walk your dog in the evening, you’ve got a problem in October and early November. Try getting up early to walk in the morning instead. Small dog particularly can play inside the house.
Chew toys, lick mats and puzzle toys can help distract your dog, reducing their anxiety. Soft music is not only calming; it helps muffle the noise of bangers and people outside. Both dogs and cats feel safer in familiar confined spaces such as their crate, under the bed or behind a sofa. You can also create a space for them much like a child’s blanket fort. Put their bed under the table, cover the table with blankets that reach the floor, and your dog has a place to retreat.
Many dogs need a little more help than this on the big day. Products such as Foran Pet Care’s Nutri-Calm can make the day much easier – and therefore safer – for our fur babies.
One of the biggest dangers to pets on Halloween is panicking and getting lost. The safest option is to secure them inside the house, at least in the evening and overnight. When taking your dog for a walk, make sure they can’t slip out of their collar or harness. Check the back garden for any possible escape opportunities. In a panic, your dog can jump higher than you might think. In some situations the best option is to use a lead even in the garden or even puppy training pads inside the house.
Avoiding Chocolate Poisoning
The treats we love on Halloween are a very cruel trick for dogs and cats. Chocolate contains a substance that damages their hearts. The damage can be quick and fatal. Keep chocolate far away from your pets, and in the days right after Halloween, watch the ground for any pieces dropped when you are walking your dog. It’s hard for them to resist. If your dog does ingest chocolate, contact your vet immediately.
With some planning, your family can enjoy Halloween while also keeping your beloved pets safe.