Put your paws together for HOWL-ween! Cheesy, we know, but who doesn’t include their pet in the fun festivities like dressing in quirky costumes and gallivanting through your neighborhood in search of treats?! Although Halloween is a fun and scary holiday for families, it can also be fun and scary for our family pets as well.
Candy bars, lollipops, tootsie rolls, OH MY! It’s a great time to stock up on sweets, but these sweets can be a hazard in a house with pets. We can eat too much chocolate and get a stomach ache, but if a dog or cat consumes chocolates or candy wrappers it can actually cause severe kidney and liver problems or bowel obstructions. These are both urgent and often emergency scenarios that are nothing to Snicker about!
Another candy concern is sugar-free gum; it has an added sweetener called Xylitol that when consumed in moderate amounts can cause lethargy, seizures, vomiting, and in severe cases, liver failure. Store your sweets high so Fido and Fluffy can’t get into them Now or Later.
Not only are we concerned about the ingestion of sweets and treats, but costumes can be worrisome for pet owners as well! Some owners notice behavior changes on or around Halloween because costumes can make pets uncomfortable whether they are wearing them or are around them. Some unique outfits make weird noises or blow in the wind and can make your pet wary and anxious. This may lead to a loss of appetite, diarrhea, or seclusion with your pet, which often ends up with an after-hours phone call to your vet. Good thing our practice offers 24-hour emergency care for our clients!
One more thing to think about when you are getting ready for trick-or-treating is to make sure your dogs’ collar is tight and ID tag is up-to-date. How many times will you open your door to greet ghosts and goblins? Cats and dogs slip outside a lot on these evenings, and sometimes dogs get spooked while out amongst the costumed crowd and run away. Be proactive and keep your pets collars on and ID tags current.