Pet safety on Halloween

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Illustration by Lydia Wojack-West

Halloween is coming up soon, and while the majority of people like to celebrate with quirky costumes, fancy decorations and otherworldly treats, there are some who have more malicious intentions.

Here are eight tips to make sure your furry ones are safe during this year’s festivities:

Tuck away your treats

While many pet stores sell treats to make your animals feel included during the holiday, the ones that you purchase for trick-or-treaters could be lethal if ingested. All chocolate can pose serious health risks if ingested, especially in dogs and cats. Xylitol, a common artificial sweetener, can also cause health problems if eaten accidentally.

Watch your wires

Make sure that you keep all of the wires associated with your Halloween decorations out of reach of your pets, as they could easily nibble on them and accidentally get electrocuted. It’s also important to make sure your wires are arranged in a way that Fido won’t get tangled up if he runs into them by accident. 

Costume care

Make sure that if you decide to dress up your pets for Halloween that their inevitably adorable costume won’t inhibit their ability to move or breathe properly.

Decoration defense

A kitten might be a little too inquisitive about your jack-o-lantern. If a pet gets curious about the light and knocks the whole thing over, fire becomes a real danger.

Patio playfulness

While it might seem like a fun idea to take your pet out to your patio or yard to include them in the more public side of Halloween, there are some people who like to take advantage of animals. While Halloween tends to be a fun time for pets and their owners alike, nobody wants to search for their furry friend on a night where everyone is out in the street.

ID importance

If you must let your pet out on Halloween, make sure that they have some sort of identification. While not everyone wants to utilize microchips, it is very important to make sure your pets have something to let people know who they belong to and where to return them.

Social safety

If your pet has a tendency to be unfriendly toward strangers, make sure you keep them in an area of your house that’s doesn’t have access to the door. This way, when you’re handing out tricks and treats, the children scampering throughout the neighborhood will be just as safe as your pet.

Have a good holiday!

You and your pet want to have just as much fun as everyone trick-or-treating, and being safe should never inhibit that. Have fun, and be safe!

If you think that your pet has consumed something that may be toxic, even if it’s just a hunch, make sure you call your local veterinarian immediately or the ASPCA Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435 for advice on how to keep your loved one safe and healthy.

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