It’s spooky season! Time for ghouls, goblins, and good times. With all the excitement that comes with the Halloween season, be sure to have your pet ready for all the spooks and screams.
Follow these steps so your pet enjoys a fun day full of just treats – not tricks:
- A spooked cat can hide in the most elusive places for days. So keep your kitty safe, by locking them in a safe room like your bedroom. You can try turning on the TV or playing some music to help mask all the excitement going on outside.
- As for dogs, if they’re afraid of crowds or is protective of you or your home it may be best to let them sit this one out in the safe room with the cat.
- If your puppy is between 8 and 11 weeks old, they are in the fear imprint stage. This is a built-in survival mechanism that goes back to their ancestors. When the wolf pup first emerges from her den at about 8 weeks of age, if she’s frightened by something like a bear or a gunshot, this will imprint on her, and she will be afraid of it forever. So, translation: if you take your puppy out on Halloween and they’re frightened by the costumes, crowds, and noises, they may be afraid of these for the rest of her life. So, bottom line – only let your dog participate in Halloween if they are past the fear imprint stage and can socialize confidently.
- Costumes! If you plan on dressing up your pet, let them wear it ahead of time to test out how they move in it. Be sure they are comfortable in their get-up and doesn’t block their vision. Let him play fetch or run around in it , so they can feel perfectly at ease when it’s time to scare!
- Never leave pets outside on Halloween. The extra activity, noises, and costumes can be super scary, and unfortunately, there are increased instances of dogs escaping their yards on Halloween.
- If your dog is staying home with you while you’re giving out candy, keep him on a leash at your side. They will enjoy walking around with you “helping,” and this way you can keep track of where they are and what they’re getting into!
- Beware of the treats! Remember, chocolate, raisins, and grapes can be deadly. So if your dog is out trick-or-treating with you, keep them on a short leash and don’t let them pick up treats that may have fallen on the ground. If your dog is experiencing vomiting, diarrhea, rapid breathing, seizure, or any sign of physical distress, get in touch with your veterinarian immediately.
- Beware of decorations! Candles and lights add to the festive atmosphere but make sure your pet doesn’t go near open flames and doesn’t have an opportunity to get tangled in or chew on electrical chords.
- Just in case your pets do get loose, be sure to have name tags with phone numbers on your cats and dogs. If possible, have them microchipped, so you’ll have the best chance of getting them back!
These are just a few ideas on how you can best keep your pet safe and protect during the spooky season. Enjoy a very happy Howl-O-Ween!