Everyone loves Halloween, the kids are out trick or treating, the fun apple bobbing games, the scary costumes all in all an exciting time especially for children. Halloween however can be a very distressing time for our pets. From fireworks and bangers to the general hysteria that surrounds the holiday, some pets can get so frightened that they can escape and go missing.
Trick or Treating loot is not for your pets
Chocolate is especially lethal for dogs and even the smallest amount can lead to poisoning which can include symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, seizures and even death.
Don’t leave your pets outside
We have all read the horror stories in the news in previous years about animals being abused and even tortured during Halloween. Black cats are especially susceptible to acts of cruelty due to their wrongful association of being linked to evil forces. Many animal rescue centres will not adopt out any black cats in the run up to Halloween for this reason. The fact remains there are some very sick and twisted individuals out there who will not think twice about inflicting pain on any animal. Dogs should also be kept inside as incidents of family dogs being stolen has risen recently. So better safe than sorry and keep them safely inside.
Keep your pet away from the front door
Animal Shelters are over run with an abundance of stray animals taken in over the Halloween period. With the amount of trick or treaters calling your front door will be opening non stop and this gives your pet ample opportunity to escape. Also your pet might not be used to seeing loud, excited children dressed up in scary costumes and as dogs can be very territorial animals may see them as intruders and it may lead to growling or even trying to bite people at the door.
You never know if or when your pet is going to escape and with the amount of fireworks over Halloween, it does cause dogs to bolt. Remember to always keep a collar, id tag and micro chip on your dog and always make sure that your contact details are up to date. It is now the law in Ireland, that your dog must have a collar and id tag bearing its owners name and contact details at all times and since March 2016 all dogs must be microchipped and registered on an authorised data base. Keep a look out at your local veterinary practice as they often run special offers on microchipping and it may just turn out to be the best money you ever spend.
Beware Fire Hazards
Don’t keep lit pumpkins around your pet. They could burn themselves or knock it over and cause a fire, and it can happen so quickly and so easily. Same applies to bonfires and fireworks, pets and fire do not mix.
Keep an eye out for Strays
It is a sad reality that unfortunately not all animals have somewhere to call home and strays are more at risk to acts of cruelty. If you do see an animal being abused call the Gardai. Please don’t turn a blind eye and assume someone else will help. These are innocent animals who don’t have a voice of their own, they need us to be their voice.