Halloween can be a lot of fun, but it can also be very scary for dogs. Halloween is when they hear about more dogs dying or straying than any other holiday.
There is usually a lot more accessible chocolate in the house for dogs to get into, the result of which can be deadly. Plus, the overabundance of loud noises and door bell ringing can set off a dogs’ flight instinct.
As pet owners we can keep a few simple things in mind to make Halloween a fun and safe holiday for all our four-legged friends.
1. Don’t leave your dog outside
Even if you have a fenced garden, bring your dog inside where it is safe. If your dog is usually kept outside, bring him in a few times before Halloween to get him used to being indoors. Your dog may be used to strangers, but so many little ghouls and goblins running about may be too much. Remember also that it is a natural instinct for dogs to protect the family from strangers, and on Halloween there will be no shortage of strangers.
2. Keep your dog restrained
If your dog is timid or scared, or if he tends to love people a little too much, it is best to put him in a separate room away from the front door to limit his excitability, aggression, and chance of running outside and becoming lost.
3. Reassure your dog
The best thing you can do for your dog when he is feeling unsettled by Halloween activities is to act as you normally would. By over-reassuring your dog or giving him an unusual amount of attention, you inadvertently can communicate to him that because you are acting differently, there must be something to worry about.
4. Have your dog get used to costumes
Your dog may see his family members as strangers once they don their Halloween costumes. Before the kids put them on, allow your dog to scent the costumes. If your costume has a mask, keep the mask off when you are with your dog because dogs can become confused when they can’t see our faces.
5. Check your dog’s ID tag
Be sure identification tags are secure on your dog’s collar-just in case.
6. Keep sweets away from your dog
Many candies-especially chocolate-are toxic to dogs. The severity of the toxicity depends greatly on factors such as breed, age, size, and how much candy was ingested. Problems may range from a mild upset tummy to vomiting and diarrhea, or even death. If you have any concerns at all, consult with a veterinarian immediately. If you want to keep your dog safe, make certain that sweets, including their wrappers, are kept well away from your dog.
7. Protect dogs from candles and pumpkins
Excited or agitated dogs can easily knock over a lit candle or pumpkin. Be sure those items are away from your dog’s reach, or consider a battery-powered candle that does not burn
8. Think twice about dressing your dog in a costume
While some dogs might enjoy being dressed up, many don’t. Experiment first to see if your dog likes being in a costume. If so, fine-hell most likely enjoy himself