Have a Happy Howloween!

Categories: Dogs, Cats

A cute chihuahua dog dressed as a pumpkin for Halloween sitting with fall decorations.

It's that time of year again - a light chill is in the air, pumpkins line neighborhood streets, the trees are beginning to don their festive colors, and maybe you've noticed some houses getting a little spooky. Fall is finally here, meaning Halloween night is upon us! For many of us, Halloween is a time of laughter, mischief, and (most importantly) candy. For our pets, however, Halloween can be pretty scary!

With all the excitement of trick-or-treaters, costumes, masks, decorations, and sounds, it's easy for your pet to be overwhelmed. But don't worry! You can still enjoy a hauntingly good evening with your pet with these few simple tips to for a safe and happy Halloween.

1. The Treats

Candy and sweets are abundant on Halloween, which, believe it or not, isn't always a good thing. Many Halloween treats are toxic to both dogs and cats, so it's important to keep candies out of reach of pets. Be sure to watch your little ones while they enjoy their treats as well, to ensure they don't try to share their sugary bounty with your pet. If you want to include your pet in the yummy festivities, have their favorite treats on hand and be sure to reward them for their good behavior.

2. The Tricks

Unfortunately, not all Halloween pranks are made in good fun. Some "pranksters" have been known to steal, tease, or even injure or kill pets on Halloween night. For this reason, it is especially important to keep all pets indoors on Halloween. If you have an outdoor cat, especially a black cat, you may consider keeping your pet in a few days before and after Halloween, as they have a higher risk of cruelty this time of year. Make sure all your pets have collars with tags, in case they get out and need help finding their way home.

3. Costumes

Weather it's a costume for you or your pet, make sure your pet has time to get used to the festive garments before the big night. Costumes change the way we look and smell, so make sure you do a costume test run before trick-or-treating or Halloween parties. If you feel your dog can't handle your planned festivities, make sure they have a "safe room" away from all of the excitement where they can relax. If you would like your pet to wear their own costume, make sure they are comfortable in it before hand, to reduce stress.

4. Decorations

Decorations are an important part of the Halloween atmosphere, but some can pose a safety hazard to your pet. Make sure you keep pets away from Jack-O-Lanterns and lit candles, to prevent burns and fires. Make sure your pet is comfortable with any decorations that move or make noise on their own before putting them on display.