Halloween Pet Safety Tips

An adult golden retriever resting their chin on a large pumpkin.

Happy Halloween from Caudle Vet Clinic! The spooky season is a fun time of year for families, and you may wish to include your furry friends in the festivities. However, there are many opportunities for your pet to sneak a bite of candy that may be poisonous to them or get into trouble with Halloween decorations. That’s why we have compiled some pet safety tips for keeping your pet safe this Halloween! 

Pet Safety Tips to Keep Your Pet Safe on Halloween

  • Only put safe and comfortable costumes on your pet. Wearing a costume may be stressful for some pets, so only put one on them if they love it. Check the costume for any pieces that could break off, as this could present a choking hazard. Allow them to get used to wearing it, and ensure that it does not restrict their breathing or movement. Even if the costume fits well and your pet is comfortable, do not leave a costumed pet unsupervised. 
  • If your pet struggles with strangers, keep them in a room away from the front door during Halloween. This also helps to make sure that your pet will not run out suddenly. In the event that your pet escapes, it’s important to make sure they have proper identification: a collar and possibly a microchip. 
  • Keep lit jack-o-lanterns and other Halloween decorations out of a pet’s reach. Curious pets can easily knock over a lit pumpkin and start a fire, or get burned by an open flame. When it comes to edible decorations, pumpkins and decorative corn are considered relatively nontoxic but can produce stomach discomfort in pets, so it is best to keep them out of your pets’ reach! 
  • Candy is plentiful around during Halloween, and your pet may reach a piece without you noticing. Chocolate in all forms can be extremely toxic for cats and dogs, and candies containing the sugar substitute xylitol can also be very dangerous. Keeping candy in a secure area away from your pet is vital for their safety. 

What To Do In Case of A Halloween Pet Emergency

  • If your pet eats Halloween candy, it is imperative that you contact Caudle Vet Clinic immediately. Signs of chocolate ingestion and possible toxicity include:
    • Vomiting
    • Panting
    • Diarrhea
    • Agitation
    • Increased thirst
    • In severe cases, seizures
  • Accidents happen, and if your pet becomes injured on Halloween, we urge you to bring them into our clinic! Another step to avoiding harm to your pet is keeping all human Halloween costume pieces away from pets. This is especially important regarding pieces like glow sticks and batteries. If your pet begins choking on something:
    • Lay your pet on their side.
    • Check the mouth to see if the object has been dislodged. 
    • Hold your pet’s back against your stomach with their head up and paws down.
    • With one hand, find the soft hollow under the ribs. Your closed fist should fit into this spot).
    • Use the hand on your pet’s stomach to pull up and in two or three times, toward your own stomach, using a sharp thrusting motion.

Halloween accidents and injuries can be scary. We care about your pet’s safety year-round, so we hope these guidelines lead to a safe and fun Halloween. If your pet needs care, call Caudle Vet Clinic at (615) 227-6230 or schedule an appointment via our website today. We look forward to taking care of your pets!

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