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I love Halloween.

I’m such a sucker for pumpkin everything, ghost stories, candy, and costumes. Every year when scary movies start playing 24/7 on the TV, I always get a little giddy. Christmas may be “the most wonderful time of the year”, but Halloween time might be the most fun.

However, one thing to keep in mind this Halloween is the safety of your pets.

As fun as Halloween is, the reality is that it can be a kind of crazy night, especially for fluffy family members. Parties, all kinds of snacks, candles, strange people coming around — all of these can spell danger for your pets if you’re not careful.

But with a few simple precautions, both you AND your pets can have a frightfully good Halloween that only involves the kind of trick that is rewarded by a treat!

Celebrating can start early, keep your pets inside before Halloween — especially at night.

Halloween parties and festivities often start happening a few days, even a week before the actual day. This can mean reckless behavior, loud noises, and in the worst cases animal abuse in the name of a “trick”. Keep those pets safely indoors with you!

This goes double for pet parents with black cats. Every year there are reports of cruelty targeted at black cats during Halloween.

Keep candy out of reach

Halloween candy can at the very least give your dog or cat an upset stomach, at the worst lead to toxicity or death. Don’t take any chances, keep that candy far away from them.

Remember chocolate and xylitol (an artificial sweetener) are very toxic to dogs and cats. If your pet accidentally consumes either of these, call your vet immediately.

Be careful with candles and Jack-o-Lanterns

Keep Jack-o-Lanterns outside or in a place that your pets can’t get to them. My cats are fascinated by fire, and they almost knocked over my lit Jack-o-Lantern one year!

I now prefer using electric, or flameless candles around my home and in pumpkins. This way I can avoid a singed house AND a singed kitty!

Note: Also make sure your dog or cat doesn’t nibble on your carved pumpkin. It isn’t toxic, but could cause an upset tummy!

Vader the Firefighter

Keep pets away from trick or treaters

Halloween can be a stressful night for your pets with all the strange sounds and smells. If you’re anticipating trick or treaters coming to your door, put your pet in another room.

This way you can avoid an anxious, barking dog, or a cat darting out into the night. And keep their tags and collars on them! Haven’t microchipped your pet? DO IT NOW.

If your dog or cat seems especially anxious, think about using a Thunder Shirt to calm them.

Costumes should be fun AND safe

Don’t get me wrong, nobody loves a dachshund dressed as a hotdog more than I do.

But if you’re going to dress your pet up, make sure your pet is not only happy in his or her costume, but also that it’s safe.

Pets are going to scratch and fidget in their costumes. Even the most relaxed pooch will have an itch to scratch at some point. Make sure there’s nothing on the costume that a paw or snout could get caught or scratched on.

Lots of costumes also have lots of loose pieces, make sure there’s nothing your pet could accidentally choke on if they chewed on their costume.

Do a costume trial run. Nobody’s going to have a happy Halloween if your pet is uncomfortable, or if you’re constantly fighting to keep it on them. Instead of that octopus costume, maybe go for a spooky bandana? Or Halloween themed leash?

And now that I mention it, don’t forget to keep your pet leashed if you are going to be out and about participating in Halloween festivities. A light on their collar or leash (in a Halloween Orange!) is also a must if you’re going to be out after dark!

Try one of these lights on your pooch’s collar!

Halloween can be cauldrons of fun for everyone, as long as you’re sensitive to your pet’s needs.

And don’t forget Fido or Fluffy when you’re snacking on your Halloween goodies. They may not be able to eat candy corn or caramel apples, but that doesn’t mean they should miss out on pet friendly treats!

Happy Halloween!

~Your Loyal Calvin & Susie Blogger

As always, check with your vet before making any changes to your pet’s diet or body care. The Calvin & Susie Blogger always researches to the best of her ability, but she is not a vet. This blog is not in any way meant to replace veterinary advice or care. When in doubt always ask a vet.

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