Give Your Pets a Safe and Happy Halloween
Halloween ghosts and goblins may be fuel for nightmares, but there’s more to fear than the things that go bump in the night. For pet owners, there are plenty of ways for our furry loved ones to find trouble, particularly when they’re left alone with a bag full of goodies.
Here are some of the most significant Halloween pet dangers to look out for, and you just might avoid any Halloween-related emergencies:
Of all the candies that could find their way into your pet’s mouth, chocolate is the biggest threat. There are chemicals in chocolate that are similar to caffeine that can quickly sicken your dog or cat. The darker the chocolate, the more dangerous and poisonous it is to them. If you notice a torn up candy wrapper, watch out for symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, increased thirst, elevated heart rate, lethargy or seizures. Avoid making an emergency pet visit by stowing treats out of pets’ reach.
2. Candy and Wrappers
Trying to limit ourselves to just one piece of candy is difficult for any human; just imagine how hard it is for a pet. Ingesting large quantities of sugar-filled treats can lead to pancreatitis, an inflammation of the pancreas. Sometimes signs won’t surface for hours. Similar to chocolate, candy can cause your pet to vomit, have diarrhea, abdominal pain or even kidney failure.
Don’t forget about candy wrappers and bags as well. If you snack on a candy bar or some chewables, make sure you dispose of what contained that treat. The foil, cellophane or plastic wrapper can cause life-threatening bowel obstructions, which could require surgery.
Good-intentioned neighbors hand out raisins as a healthy alternative to candy, which, in turn, may cause your children to toss the box of dried grapes into a dark corner or under the couch out of frustration. That action is anything but good news for your pet if they sniff it out. Even a small amount of raisins can cause kidney failure in dogs and cats. Be on high alert!
4. Glow Sticks & Jewelry
Pets are always chewing on things they’re not supposed to. Pet owners have had to throw away a treasured item at one point another. If you thought a shiny pair of shoes looks appetizing enough for a cat or dog, try a glow stick or glowing jewelry on for size. It’s a choking hazard, no doubt, but the contents of those mesmerizing objects can cause significant pain and irritation in the mouth. Keep an eye out for any heavy drooling or foaming at the mouth.
5. Open Doors
This is the one we forget about most often, because it’s all about the kids. Halloween, and the holidays in general, puts a lot of stress on our pets. Think about it: All that doorbell ringing and knocking at the door, the opening and closing of doors, and decorations are a major change in the flow that our pets are used to. Keep your Halloween happenings on the down-low. Before the activity starts, keep your pets in a safe room, where they can’t stealthy sneak out a open door as your treating all those treaters. Dogs and cats can become easily excited by all the commotions, and a bite or lost puppy can quickly ruin the evening of fun.
As cute as it is to see our pets dressed as a furry critter, pets are happiest when they are wearing nothing but their birthday suits. If you choose to slip a costume on your pet, make sure it doesn’t effect their movement, vision or air intake. Also be cautious of any small attachments on your costume. Speak with your veterinarian if you have any concerns.
Rather than spend your Halloween night in the emergency room with your pet, prepare and pet-proof all these items away instead. If your pet gets into any treats, contact your veterinarian or an animal poison control immediately. Mercy Pet Clinic is here to help and be your best resource to ensure the health and well-being of your furry four-legged friends.