by Guest Author Penny Martin @ fureverfriend.info
For many pet owners, their animals are like members of the family. As such, it’s important to find ways to get the pets involved on holidays and during fun events. But it’s also imperative to make sure they stay safe. Halloween—when there are lots of new people around—is an especially important time to keep your pet safe, happy, and anxiety-free. From getting him acclimated to new people to keeping chocolate and other treats out of reach, there are many things you can do to help your pup have a great Halloween.
It’s also important to think about your pet’s comfort level on the big night. For instance, if he’ll be wearing a costume, make sure it fits well and won’t impede his movement or ability to drink water. Younger dogs may find a way to chew on their costume or wriggle out of it; ensure it doesn’t have any loose parts or strings that could be choked on.
Here are some tips on how to include your dog in the festivities this Halloween.
Keep him visible
Since most Halloween activities take place at night, it’s important to make sure your pup is visible to both people and other animals. You can buy LED lights to clip onto his harness or collar, or make sure he’s wearing reflective gear that will show up well in headlights and street lamps. This is especially important if he’s wearing a costume, so make sure the reflective gear is visible on top of his outfit.
Keep human treats out of reach
For those with a sweet tooth, Halloween is a wonderful time, thanks to all the chocolate and treats. But for pets, it can be a very dangerous time. Dogs should be kept well away from these kinds of foods. Talk to your family members about staying vigilant all night. When the kids get home with their bags of loot, have them put them away on a high shelf so there will be no chance of your pup getting into them. To keep him uninterested, have some healthy snacks just for him around the house. Life’s Abundance offers wholesome treats, not just empty calories, that each serve a purpose! Click here for some great ideas.
Make sure he’s okay with strangers
Your dog may be adorable, but if he’s not okay with strangers coming up to pet him, it might be best to leave him home during trick-or-treating. Even if he is generally friendly and sociable, keep in mind that there is a lot more activity going on during this night than your pet is used to. Some pets have anxiety on this night, especially if the doorbell will be ringing a lot. If you aren’t planning to hand out candy, turn off your porch light and close the front door.
Keep the decorations safe
If your Halloween decorations have lots of wires or moving parts, it’s important to keep them out of your pet’s reach. Make sure any jack-o-lanterns—especially the kind with candles in them—are put up off the floor. If your decor includes anything that looks edible, but isn’t—such as corn stalks—make sure they are up high enough that your pup won’t decide to snack on them.
Including your dog in your Halloween festivities can be a fun experience for the entire family, but it’s important to think of everyone’s safety throughout the entire night—not just for trick-or-treating. Keep him visible, make sure he’s socialized enough to not have any issues when he’s outside with strangers, and help him stay comfortable. With a good plan, you can ensure that your pup has a great time with no anxiety or worry.