Tips to keep your pup safe and calm
during Halloween festivities
Photo by Pixabay
Halloween is arguably the most fun holiday of the year. Costumes, candy, decorations, pumpkins and kids. Who wouldn’t love it? Your dog, perhaps.
Well, he might actually enjoy it, but you have to be careful that he enjoys it safely. Halloween and its parties bring dangers for your pooch that you may not even be aware of.
Here are some tips to keep your pup safe and happy this Halloween:
Take him for a walk -- Before the festivities begin, take him for a long walk so he can get his exercise and tire out. He’ll be less likely to jump around and knock people and food over. A tired pooch is more likely to lie on his bed chewing a bone or napping during the ruckus.If the kids insist on taking Rover trick-or-treating with you, be sure you have the right safety gear for nighttime walks. Be sure he wears something reflective, whether it’s his leash, harness or collar. You may also want to attach a blinking light to his harness or collar, which will draw more attention than reflective gear on its own, and keep your pooch visible to all of the ghouls and goblins searching for candy.
Skip the costume -- Costumes can be restrictive to your pooch, and can get caught on furniture and cause him to choke or injure himself. If you must put him in a costume, make sure it fits properly, keep it minimal and never leave him alone while wearing it. Make sure it’s made with non-toxic materials and dyes in case your dog tries to eat it.
Watch the candy -- If you’re having a party or are expecting trick-or-treaters, consider forgoing chocolate. Chocolate can be toxic to dogs, and in the chaos of the holiday, you might not see Fido steal a candy bar. Sugar-free options, such as gum, have xylitol in them, which is also toxic to dogs. If you have kids at home, remind them not to share their candy with your pup. Have some dog treats ready so guests and kids can give him a little snack. If you’re having a grown-up party, make sure to keep alcoholic drinks and any kind of smoke away from your pup. It can be dangerous and potentially fatal to dogs.
Keep wires out of reach -- Halloween decorations are often electric and have wires. Dogs like to chew things they aren’t familiar with, so leaving these wires accessible can cause a serious injury or even death to your pooch. Keep them hidden or cover them with a rug. The same goes for candles -- they don’t mix with dogs and cats because they can get knocked over. Keep your jack-o-lantern away from your pooch.
Put nervous dogs away -- If you have a dog who gets anxious during lots of activity, it might be best to put him in a crate or a room where he can’t run loose. There are strangers coming to the door constantly, kids running around the house, and the constant ringing of a doorbell. Your dog could constantly bark, run out the door or even bite someone. Remember that some kids might be afraid of dogs, and it isn’t your place to help them learn to like them.
Make sure his ID is up to date -- His microchip and ID tag should be updated with your latest contact information. If he should accidentally get away from you, you want him to be returned home immediately, lest you have a very unhappy Halloween.
Talk to your vet -- If you dog is the very nervous type, consider asking your vet for a tranquilizer or have your dog boarded for the evening. Some dogs just can’t take the stress of activity, crowds and chaos. Know your dog’s personality enough to prepare.
At the end of the day, you’ll be able to curl up with your buddy and watch Halloween movies, secure in the extra safety your pooch provides from the ghosts haunting the evening.