While humans may have a blast during Halloween and the season, many of the spooktacular traditions and happenings can be scary–if not terrifying–for our pets. If you’ve never considered it, let’s ponder what scares our pets. Loud noises. Strangers. Strange, unfamiliar smells (like makeup, plastic costumes, decor, and candy). Creepy sounds. Screams, screeches, and bumps in the night. All of which Halloween is made of. We’re here this October with tips to help you make Halloween a lot less scary for your pets. While we people might enjoy the frights of the season, our goal as amazing pet parents is to ease any stress or anxiety for our fur babies. 

Keep the Candy Away from Pets

Most forms of candy are toxic to pets. Especially chocolate–which your pet’s little body cannot metabolize. The buildup of caffeine that naturally occurs in chocolate and other constituents can cause serious issues and emergency vet visits. Large amounts of chocolate can even be fatal. Other ingredients, such as the sweetener xylitol, can also be toxic to pets. Their little organs just can’t process it. Corn syrup, an ingredient in most sweets, can also cause serious tummy upset. 

Create a Safe Space for Pets

Halloween can be loud and scary for pets. When the festivities begin, ensure they have a cozy room to hide away in that’s quiet and comfortable. Set up a cozy pet bed on the floor–or some blankets for them to rest on. Place a few of their toys in the room, as well as a water dish and maybe a few treats. It can also help to play soothing music for them while Halloween gears up. Especially if you’re having a Halloween party or greeting trick-or-treaters. 

Don’t Bring Your Pet Trick-or-Treating

Unless your pet is super resilient, loves wearing a costume, and isn’t bothered by loud noises, we suggest leaving your furry BFF at home. We know–it’s tempting to want to show them off in public in a Halloween costume, but we suggest saving that for home. In a space that’s familiar, safe, and comfortable. Many pets get scared and anxious around all the strangers, things jumping and bumping in the neighborhood, and more–during trick-or-treating and celebrations. Most Halloween parties contain these dangers, too. Sometimes leaving your pet at home is the best solution. We recommend snapping a pic of them in their Halloween costume to share all night long, while they rest comfortably at home.

Reconsider Pet Costumes

While pet costumes are extremely cute, fun, and social media-worthy, many pets get agitated, afraid, and even scared when you put costumes on them. If your pet seems anxious in a costume, you may want to reconsider. Anxious pets tend to get into candy, tear things up, or try to run away. Keep a constant eye on your pet when they’re in costume, and watch for any signs of anxiety. If they start to get agitated, it may be time to remove the costume and have your pet rest in a quiet, safe space. 

Keep Your Pet’s Point-of-View in Mind

Only you know the mood of your pet–and whether loud noises and surprises make them anxious or worried during festivities like Halloween and the 4th of July. Perhaps they prefer to be right by your side, or they’d rather hide away in a cozy corner. Scared pets tend to bolt, but we’re here to help you keep your pets safe and at home with you this Halloween. As always, please call us with any questions about your pet’s health this season or any time of year in the Galveston Bay area.