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While Halloween can be a fun and festive time for young and old alike; many of our pets can find this to be quite a stressful time of year. We would like to provide you with a few tips to help you and your pet have an enjoyable and safe Halloween.

SAFETY TIPS FOR PETS

1. Please don’t put your pet in a costume unless you know he or she really doesn’t mind it. Ensure that costumes are not too tight, and have no loose pieces that may be chewed or swallowed.
2. Wires from decorations and electric lights should be kept of reach of your pets. If chewed your pet may suffer cuts, burns or possibly life threatening electrical shock.
3. Popular Halloween plants such as pumpkins and monkey nuts are considered to be relatively non-toxic but they can produce stomach upsets in animals that nibble on them.
4. A carved pumpkin if festive, but do exercise caution if you choose to add a candle, pets can easily knock over a lit candle and cause a fire. Curious kittens especially run the risk of getting burned by candle flames.

CANDY CONCERNS shutterstock_2770197

1.Candies, gums, mints and chocolate containing the “sugar free” sweetener Xylitol are especially toxic and may cause rapid hypoglycemia and may cause liver damage in dogs.

2. Chocolate is toxic to pets. While milk chocolate is less toxic than baking chocolate, consumption of even relatively small amounts may cause vomiting and diarrhoea. Ingestion of large amounts may result tremors, nervousness, vomiting, increased heart rate and in severe cases seizures and possibly death.

3. Other candies such as lollipops and those with plastic components pose a choking hazard and may also result in intestinal blockages.

FRIGHT NIGHT

Pet-Anxiety

Continual door bell ringing and people at the door can be very stressful for pets who may not be accustomed to strangers. While there will often be the continuous noise of fireworks that can be very frightening for many pets. It is best to keep your pet in a quiet safe place during the busiest time on Halloween night. All but the most social dogs and cats should be kept in a separate room away from the front door. If your pet is particularly frightened you may keep the doors and windows closed and the television or music on to mask the sound of fireworks. Don’t punish your pet when they act nervously.

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Try to walk your before the busiest time of trick or treating. Keep them on a short lead as loud strangers in costume may be frightening and may provoke an aggressive reaction in even the nicest pets. If your pet is very fearful, try to keep them indoors during those stressful times as many pets may attempt to escape from the fearful stimuli and can go missing and often injure themselves in the process. Always make sure that your dog or cat has proper identification, if your pet becomes lost, tags and/or microchips can be a lifesaver, increasing the chance that your pet will be returned to you.

For very severe cases of fear and anxiety, your veterinarian may be able to suggest certain therapeutic options that may be able to minimise your pet’s stress during this time. Please don’t hesitate to contact us should you have any questions about your pet’s behaviour.