Halloween is upon us. This is a great time to gather friends, enjoy fun snacks, and hang out outside. However, this can pose some risks to your pets. Here are some tips to keep your fur baby safe while spooking.

Decorations – Who’s afraid of the big bad wolf?
Halloween kicks off the most decorative time of year! Make sure that your pet is kept safe. Try using battery operated lights in jack-o-lanterns instead of candles. Keep an eye on glowsticks, Fake blood, rubber props. Most pets love to chew these, and the fillings may be toxic for your pet. Also watch pets around artificial spiderwebs, it is easy to get paws tangled in those while playing.

Consider using cardboard boxes in your decorating – Give your pet a place to hide and explore safely.

Costumes – Because going as a dog is so last year!
Costumes are a great way to include your pet in the festivities but make sure to consider comfort. Some fabrics can insulate your pet making it very easy to overheat, others can bind and pinch the skin. Masks and hats can impede breathing, or scratch at eyes and ears.

It is suggested that you try out a costume and check for your pet’s comfort level. Look for signs of discomfort such as hunched walking, lowered head and ears, and sideways glances and turning. Evaluate your pet often and remove costume if uncomfortable or if they are chewing loose ends.

When in doubt – Hurry and take a photo and let your pet relax the rest of the evening. No one will know 😊

Snacks – Vampires are not the only ones with GARLIC issues!
As always, avoiding people treats is the best for your pet. Chocolate, grapes, garlic, onions are among the top toxic treats your pets can get into. Also, the sweetener xylitol (a more recently discovered toxin) is found in an assortment of products like gum and sugar-free sweets.

Keeping candy bags stowed away and poison control’s number handy will help prevent the dreaded chocolate terror.

Trick or treat – Smell our feet!
It is best to leave your pet at home and inside during your haunting. Strangers in costumes, moving decorations, and strange sounds can alarm your pet. This can cause stress for your pet and possible unwanted behaviors.

“A room diffuser and a dark, quiet room are helpful to pet this time of year” says Dr. Elizabeth Crowder. “Feliway and Adaptil both use pheromone technology to provide a safe calming effect in your pet.”

You can also (weather permitting) pass out treats from your garage or driveway. This reduces the amount times your pet is alerted to the doorbell.

Identification – Who’s afraid of the big bad wolf?
Make sure your pets are microchipped and have appropriate identification. Trick or treaters give many opportunities for your pet to run out the front door.

Inside is also the safest place for your black cat as misfortune tends to follow them in October (awful superstitious people).