Oct 31, 2020

Don't let this pirate anywhere near your candy!
Credit marioanima [Flickr]

Before putting your pet in a Halloween costume, is your buddy okay with the ideas?  Make sure it does not interfere with your pet's ability to breathe or see or move, with no small parts, like buttons, that are easily swallowed.  Never leave it alone while in costume, and if your pet shows signs of stress, be kind and remove the costume.  


Today is Halloween, but because of the coronavirus there may be fewer parties and less trick-or-treating with all the costumes and decorations and yummy candy and other treats. But even on a smaller scale, this holiday can pose some hazards for our pets.

At the top of the list is candy, especially chocolate which contains chemicals that can be poisonous for both dogs and cats. Symptoms include digestive problems, heart problems and seizures. Dark chocolate poses the greatest danger. Just one ounce can make a 40-50 pound dog sick. Milk chocolate is less dangerous but less than eight ounces can cause problems for that same dog. By comparison, white chocolate, is relatively safe.

Allowing your furry friend to over-indulge on other rich sugary goodies may lead to pancreatitis, which is painful and could even be fatal. Because it takes time for the pancreas to react, it might be several days before symptoms show up to indicate there is a problem.

And, some candy contains the artificial sweetener “xylitol” which is toxic for animals. Even the cellophane or aluminum foil wrappers can cause problems if eaten, possibly causing a blockage in the digestive tract requiring emergency surgery to save your best friend’s life.

Try to keep all candy away from pets. Even “healthy” treats we enjoy can actually harm dogs and cats. That includes grapes and raisins. These may be healthier for humans, but ingesting even a small amount can cause kidney failure in pets.

It’s really best to keep all Halloween goodies where your furry friend cannot get to them.

One last caution – mischief-makers sometimes tease, steal or harm pets left outdoors on Halloween. If possible, keep your furry buddy confined indoors – social distancing is good for everyone!

Remember that Halloween is just one night a year. The trick is to keep your four-footed companion safe so that you can enjoy each other’s company through all seasons. Now that’s a treat, when you’re speaking of pets!