Halloween Health Tips for your pets!

Keep your pets safe this Halloween!

Halloween can be a fun and festive time of year for all of us and our pets can get in on the fun too! While celebrating this Halloween, be sure to be diligent and aware of potential dangers to your pet. Here are a few tips and tricks to help keep your furry friends safe and healthy this Halloween!

Keep treats out of reach

Many of our favorite Halloween goodies can be toxic to our pets. Chocolate of all kinds can make your dog or cat very ill. Chocolate contains methylxanthines, chemicals that are similar to caffeine, and can quickly sicken dogs. Generally, the darker the chocolate, the more poisonous it is to our pets. Symptoms of chocolate ingestion can include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, increased thirst, elevated heart rate, and, in some severe cases, seizures.

Xylitol, a sugar substitute, is found in some sugarless gum and candies, and can be prove to be quite toxic to our pets. It can cause hypoglycemia, seizures, and in more severe cases, liver failure in dogs.

While raisins may be a healthier alternative to candy for our kids, they can be toxic to pets, even in small doses. Vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain and even kidney failure can be caused by the ingestion of raisins.

Treats aren’t the only thing that can cause an issue with out pets, the wrappers from our treats can prove to be just as much of a nuisance! Both foil and cellophane wrappers can cause life-threatening bowel obstructions, and often need surgical intervention to resolve. Vomiting, decreased appetite, lack of defecation and straining to defecate can all be symptoms indicative of wrapper ingestion.

Decorations

Keep your pumpkins out of reach! While our typical fall decor of jack-o-lanterns and decorative corn are relatively non-toxic, your pet may get some stomach upset if they chow down on too much of either of these. Not to mention, our lit jack-o-lanterns could be easily knocked over, causing a risk of fire.

Candles should be kept out of reach from curious noses and happy, wagging tails to prevent burns and singed fur! Pets don’t often realize something is hot until they are already burned.

Glow sticks are a fun toy for our kids, but can be irritating to our furry friends. Pets, especially cats, can chew on and puncture these, causing mouth pain, irritation, and sometimes profuse drooling, though ingestion is usually not life-threatening.

Costumes

Before you and your furry friend suit up for the evening, be sure that your pet’s costume is well-fitting and that your pet is comfortable and calm in it. For some pets, wearing a costume may be a stressful event, so make sure that your pet is happy while wearing it. Loose-fitting costumes can become snagged or twisted, so check that the size is correct to prevent injuries. Also, make sure that your pet’s costume does not impair or inhibit their vision, ability to breathe, or limit their movement.

 

If you follow these few tips, this Halloween should be a safe and fun event for your family, furry friends included!

To see more tips on potential poisonous items, or if you suspect your pet has ingested something that they shouldn’t, consult the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center. They can be reached 24 hours a day, 365 days a year at: (888) 426-4435

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