Halloween 2022 brings dangers for pets: How to keep your animals safe
Halloween is right around the corner, and many people will put their pets in costumes for some fun trick-or-treating or parading.
With so many pets out and about, knowing how to keep your pet safe during the holiday fun is important.
There are some key tips to keep in mind. Among them: Beyond the chances of a pet running out of the house, pets could be in danger of food poisoning and even “costume distress.”
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CEO of Pets Lifeline Nancy King said in a media statement that keeping a pet safe during Halloween can be simple with some quick tips.
Here are smart and commonsense ideas for pet safety.
Keep the treats safely tucked away
Although candy is common around the household at this time of year, make sure to keep it safely tucked away from your pets, said King.
“Chocolate is very toxic to both dogs and cats, and many sweets also contain artificial sweeteners such as xylitol, which is toxic if ingested,” she said.
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Parents and caregivers should explain the harmful effects to children as well, said King, so that they don’t accidentally feed chocolate to a dog or give their pets any other candy from their trick-or-treat bag.
Stick to pet-friendly decorations
When picking Halloween decorations, make sure they’re pet-friendly.
Dogs and cats in particular often perceive decorations differently than humans do, King explained.
For example, a dog might think your harmless pumpkin decoration is a chew toy.
“Head to your local pet store and pick them up a few spooky-themed toys they can safely enjoy, or create a DIY haunted house for your cat using cardboard boxes,” she said.
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Additionally, some decorations might be a choking hazard, depending on the materials used. Keep your pet in mind when picking out those fun decorations.
Keep pets inside after dark
King recommends walking your dog before dark on Halloween to avoid the trick-or-treaters who show up later.
The same idea goes for pets that normally stay outside during the day. If you have an indoor-outdoor cat, try to bring your feline inside early for the night.
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Also, be cautious of opening doors or windows, as pets might want to escape your home on the spooky night.
Keep an eye on those pumpkins
Although pumpkin can be nutritious for pets, King said to watch how much of it your pets consume, as too much can cause digestion issues for them.
“Everything in moderation,” she said.
Want to light that jack-o-lantern? Make sure it’s out of the way of your pets.
The last thing you want is for your pet to catch a flame — and risk being burned.
Use caution with costumes
Lastly, be cautious of the costume you choose for your pet.
Although cute and adorable — pet Halloween costumes can be a hazard for many reasons.
Also, never force a pet to wear a costume it doesn’t want to, as King says the pet may act out in return.