Halloween is a fun time of year but maybe dogs and cats are not meant to be involved. Cats generally to not appreciate loud noises and children and dogs are sometimes afraid of strange people and costumes. To avoid Halloween mishaps it is always best to leave pets at home.
Additional Halloween pet risks include:
- Chocolate and other candies – Candy is not meant for dogs and cats. Yes, they love the taste but it is not good for them. Chocolate can be especially dangerous. Chocolate has a stimulant similar to caffeine. About 1/4 oz of milk chocolate per pound of dog will cause symptoms, anything over 1/2 oz per pound could be dangerous. So a 10 pound dog would show symptoms if it ate about 2.5 oz of chocolate, it could die if it ate 5 oz. Expensive chocolates seem to be more dangerous then the grocery store brands and dark chocolate has 10 times the active ingredient as regular milk chocolate. If your pet has consumed chocolate, call your veterinarian immediately and follow their advice.
- Candy wrappers – Wrappers are also dangerous. Cats love to chase “crinkly” things but if consumed the wrappers can cause a lot of trouble. When dogs consume candies, they generally consume wrapper and all. The wrappers can cause an intestinal blockage which is considered an emergency surgery to save the life of the pet. This is a common problem in dogs and cats.
- Costumes – Dressing up is lots of fun for people but our pets may not understand who or what we are. Dogs especially tend to react to people in costumes, sometimes aggressively. Dogs are usually better kept at home and indoors on Halloween night. Pet costumes are fun but pay special attention to your pets comfort. Is the costume constricting? Are there small pieces that your pet may chew off and consume? If your pet doesn’t seem comfortable then it maybe better to remove the costume and let your dog be a dog for Halloween.
- Lost Pets – Many pets go missing on Halloween night. Many times dogs and cats run away because they were scared of a loud noise or a strange person in costume. This can be avoided by leaving dogs and cats inside. Pet identification is also important. Make sure the information on your pets id is up to date.
- Dog bites – Some dogs act aggressively when scared. Scared, aggressive dogs have been known to lash out and bite; also known as “fear biters”. These bites can be very dangerous and need medical attention. Dog bites can be avoided if owners act responsibly by keeping their dogs in a safe place.
Halloween can be safe and fun for everyone when a few pet safety tips are followed.
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