Halloween is almost here, and while it can be a lot of fun for us, and our pets, we need to be mindful of some potential threats.
- Candy. We all know that chocolate is toxic to dogs (especially dark chocolate), but there are other aspects to be aware of. If you’re slipping your pet a piece of candy, make sure it does not have any Xylitol in it, Xylitol is sugar substitute that can cause liver failure. Also be careful of candy wrappers. IndyVet has removed many candy wrappers that have caused intestinal blockage from pets who have gotten into a stash of halloween candy.
- Jack-O-Lanterns. We all love Jack-o-lanterns and the spooky glow they can provide, but be careful using candles to illuminate them. Cats are notoriously curious, and may stick their paws into the cut faces of the jack-o-lantern and could burn themselves, or knock them over and start a fire. Instead, consider a small LED tea light as a much safer alternative.
- Decorative Spider Webs. Decorative spider webs are a fun addition to a porch or a set of bushes for halloween, but you should keep them high enough that your pet can’t reach them. Pets love to get ahold of these and chew or eat them, and they can lead to intestinal blockages as well.
- Costumes. Lots of people love to dress their pets for halloween, but whatever you choose should be loose fitting, and shouldn’t incorporate a lot of adornments – chains or fabric that could get caught under the bed, or on other surfaces. Also avoid costumes that go over their faces, that may force them to look through slits. Masks can confuse them and cause distress. Hoodies or hats are ok as long as they follow the rules and are not too tight fitting, but if there is a strap that goes around their neck to hold it in place, make sure it uses some sort of break away so that they won’t be injured if the strap gets caught on something.
Halloween is a wonderful holiday, and with the right considerations can be great fun for both you and your pets!