Fall ushers in pumpkin spice mania, apple flavored everything, sweaters, boots, and all things warm and cozy. Throw in the excitement of Halloween, with its costumes, candy, and parties, and you can’t help but want to celebrate. For cat and dog lovers like us, it’s only natural to want to celebrate with our furry friends. Here are a few tips to help you and your pet enjoy a safe and relaxing Halloween together.
Pet Treats, Not Human Treats
Just like you wouldn’t let your kids eat just any Halloween candy, it’s also wise not to share it with your pet. We know it’s hard to resist those convincing puppy dog (or kitty) eyes but candy has a laundry list of ingredients that aren’t meant for cats or dogs. This includes chocolate, xylitol, sugar, and so many other hazardous substances.
Instead, treat your pet with something meant just for them, like our Premium Cow Ears, Antioxidant Health Bars, or Gourmet Cat Treats. This way, they can be included in the holiday fun without putting their health at risk.
Proper Party Provisions
Similarly, if you plan to host a Halloween party, take some time to consider what types of foods you might have available for guests. If possible, consider omitting foods like raisins, grapes, and dark chocolate that can be very dangerous, or even fatal, to pets if they should happen to pick up any scraps off the floor. Instead, you many want to:
- opt for pet-safe foods
- ask your guests not to feed your pet any human food without your permission
- keep any off-limits food covered and out of reach
Whether hosting a party, or welcoming trick-or-treaters, many of us love to play spooky music or haunted house sounds during Halloween. If you do this, try to be mindful of any sounds that you know your pet is afraid of or dislikes. This can include high-pitched sounds, dogs barking, hissing cats, creepy steps, or any other noise your pet may have had an unpleasant experience with in the past.
Music is often a safer choice than sound effects when it comes to pet-friendly ambience, but this is totally subjective depending on your dog or cat and their triggers.
One of our favorite parts of Halloween is the chance to dress up with our pets. There are so many cute combinations, and there’s nothing more fun than taking a picture with your cat or dog dressed in your Halloween finest; however, it’s important to make sure your pet’s costume is safe. For example, avoid costumes that are too long and drag under your pet’s feet. This could cause them to trip, slide, or fall. Additionally, if your pet’s costume has a headpiece, make sure it’s secure so that it doesn’t fall down over their eyes and block their vision. Finally, make sure there are no parts on your pet’s costume that they might be able to tear off and swallow (potentially causing them to choke), and nothing that could cut or irritate them.
If you choose to take your pet trick-or-treating, be sure to have them well-controlled on a leash and keep them close at all times. Command your dog to sit, if possible, before ringing doorbells at neighbors’ homes. If you’re trick-or-treating in a dark and/or congested area, consider putting a glow in the dark leash or collar on your animal, to make it easier for you and others to see them.
While we love the idea of taking our pets trick or treating with us on Halloween, if you know that your pet is easily stressed or startled, it might be best to leave Fido or Fifi at home where they’ll feel safe.
If you opt to stay home and hand out candy, make sure your cat or dog - especially if they’re not good with strangers - won’t be able to escape when you open the door to greet trick-or-treaters. For some pets, this is as simple as telling them to sit before opening the door. For others, it might be better to put up a gate, keeping your pet away from the door. And for those that love to make a break for it? It might be worth placing them in a spacious pet crate or confining them to a room with a door so you can both enjoy your Halloween.
No matter how you decide to celebrate Halloween with your pet, they’ll be grateful for everything you do to ensure they have a safe and enjoyable Halloween. With just a little bit of planning, you and your fur baby can enjoy a fun and memorable spooky season together. Happy Halloween!
If you found this interesting, check out these related stories:
Fool-Proof, Fright-Free Pet Costumes
Pet Kids Totally Acing This Halloween Thing