Once considered just a children’s holiday, Halloween has grown over the years into a festive night for all ages – and species! Including your pet in the fun is a great way to celebrate Halloween, as long as you take some simple precautions to make sure your furry friend stays safe.
- Check that your pet’s identification tag and microchip are up-to-date and that the tag is securely attached to the collar he’s wearing. With doors opening all day long, the chance of a cat or dog getting lost increases on Halloween.
- If your pet is prone to darting through open doors, keep him in another room behind a secure barrier during trick-or-treat hours. This is also a good rule of thumb if your dog or cat doesn’t respond well to strangers. You’ll avoid the risk of bites, as well as the stress that having scores of noisy people in odd costumes puts on your pet.
- Only dress up a cat or dog that enjoys it. If a costume causes a change in behavior or obvious attempts to remove the apparel, opt for a festive collar or bandanna instead.
- Keep pets away from lit jack o’ lanterns and exposed cords and wires attached to decorations. The ASPCA notes that curious, playful kittens are especially prone to burns.
- The Animal Poison Control Center warns against having glow sticks and jewelry around pets, especially cats. Easily punctured, the fluorescent material inside can cause sensitivities and excessive drooling.
- Be mindful of pranks involving pets around Halloween. Avoid theft or injury – intentional or otherwise – by keeping your pet inside when you are away from the house. Even outdoor cats should be monitored more closely, especially black cats.