Halloween Safety Tips for Dogs
Halloween can be the spookiest night of the year, but keeping your pets safe doesn’t have to be tricky. We recommend taking these simple, common-sense precautions to keep your pet happy this Halloween.
Remember dogs don’t know Halloween is just a bit of light-hearted fun, to them, it is lots of people dressed in strange clothes, often with masks covering their faces accompanied by noise and sometimes flashing lights and other props! potentially quite traumatizing.
Dogs or cats may already be feeling a little on edge from a bangs and whizzes starting to start in the evening, then suddenly this happens as well. More visitors are knocking at the door, which in itself can upset the more territorial dogs let alone with all the other factors of noise and costumes mixed in.
Stash the Treats
It's tempting to give your dog a treat from the sweetie bowl, however, it is so important human chocolate & sweets are just for trick-or-treaters, not our beloved fluffy four-legged friend. Chocolate in every form, especially dark or baking chocolate can be very dangerous for cats & dogs, and sugar-free sweets, chocolate, cakes and another confectionary containing the sugar substitute xylitol can cause serious if not life-threating problems in cats & dogs. It is important to teach children, that their sweeties are not for any pets. If you suspect your pet has ingested something toxic, please call your veterinarian as a matter of urgency.
Watch the Decorations and Keep Wires Out of Reach
Although decorations around the home are great fun, they can be alittle frighting to our pets, especially for those that make noises, move suddenly or flash. Keep decorations out of reach of your pets and if there is a particular decoration your pet is frightened off, remove the item to avoid stressing your dog. Popular Halloween plants such as pumpkins and decorative corn are considered relatively nontoxic, but can produce stomach discomfort in pets who nibble on them.
Be Careful with Costumes
For some pets, wearing a costume may cause undue stress. We recommend that you don’t put your dog or cat in a costume unless you know he or she is comfortable and clearly enjoying it. If you do dress up your pet for Halloween, make sure the costume does not limit his or her movement, sight or ability to breathe, bark or meow. Check the costume carefully for small, dangling or easily chewed-off pieces that could present a choking hazard. Ill-fitting outfits can get twisted on external objects or your pet, leading to injury.
Be sure to have your pet try on the costume before the big night. If he or she seems distressed or shows abnormal behavior, consider letting your pet wear his or her “birthday suit” or don a festive bandana instead.
Keep Pets Calm and Easily Identifiable
Halloween brings a flurry of activity with visitors arriving at the door, and too many strangers can often be scary and stressful for pets. All but the most social dogs and cats should be kept in a separate room away from the front door during peak trick-or-treating hours. Provide your dog with a safe area to rest in, his or her favorite cuddly toy and a interesting natural chew. While opening the door for guests, be sure that your dog or cat doesn’t dart outside. And always make sure your pet it wearing proper identification—if for any reason he or she does escape, a collar with ID tags and/or a microchip can be a lifesaver for a lost pet.
Herbal Remedies for Noise Anxiety
If you know that your dog is prone to noise phobia and anxiety during the fireworks season, try natural anxiety remedies for dogs such as our Dorwest Scullcap & Valerian Tablets for Dogs. These can be beneficial even at the last minute as these can be given as a ‘double dose’ 12 hours before and 2 hours before the event or fireworks display.
Our liquid supplement Valerian Compound is great to have on hand at the last minute and can be given alongside the Scullcap & Valerian Tablets.
Our Valerian Compound is a source of valerian for dogs, containing organic extracts of vervain 50%, valerian root 25% and mistletoe 25% which conform to the British Herbal Pharmacopoeia standards.
Because of the concentrated herbal extracts that are used in the Valerian Compound, it creates a noticeable change in pets’ behaviour within just 30 minutes, without causing drowsiness. The Valerian Compound is a short-lived remedy making it ideal for thunderstorms and fireworks.
Here are some last-minute ideas on how to calm down your dog on the day:
1. Take your pet out for a long walk earlier in the daylight, long before fireworks start.
2. Help dog anxiety by giving them happy activities to tire and distract them. See our special videos below for fun ideas to keep their brain busy.
3. Stay with your pet, and act in a jolly but calm manner. You can reassure your pet that all is well by remaining happy!
4. Feed your pet earlier in the day and save tasty treats for the evening. This helps them form a positive association with firework sounds.
5. Keep the TV on, and add a radio playing in another room to mask sound.
6. Allow your pet to retreat to their den and let them enjoy the peace and safety of this cosy haven.
7. If it becomes too much, pop your pet in the car and drive to a quieter location, keeping the car warm and the radio on, of course!
Have a spooky Halloween!