Halloween is not a treat for your dog or cat. In fact, Halloween for our pets is a frightful, anxiety-inducing time. As pet parents, we want to do what we can to help our fur-kids have a Halloween experience that doesn’t cause them anxiety will still letting the children in our homes enjoy the fun of dressing up and going door-to-door for treats.
How can pet parents ease their pet’s Halloween anxiety?
Pet parents may love seeing the little ghosts, ghouls, goblins and princesses at our doors, but for our dogs, those children in masks can scare them. Also, if you don’t typically have children knocking on your door, after dark, in droves the whole experience of Halloween and trick-or-treating is one that your pets simply aren’t accustomed to.
We’ve put together a few hints, tricks and treats for keeping your dogs and cats safe and happy this Halloween.
- Keep your pets away from open doors. Even the most docile pet could bite out of fear. A dog or cat who would never rush out of the door on any other day may be so frightened that he simply wants to get away and will dash out of the door and into the dark night. To keep your pets safe, keep them in a room away from the door you’ll be opening to hand out candy. If there is more than one adult in the home, have one adult stay with the pets and one adult hand out candy. If you’re worried that your dog or cat will scratch at the door to get to you and check out what the commotion at the door is about, put up a CLAWGUARD in the room in which your pets are hanging out to protect the door and the door frame.
- Meet the trick-or-treaters away from the door. Many pet parents will hang out at the end of the driveway and meet the trick-or-treaters there to prevent the frenzy of knocking at the door.
- Keep your pets on leashes. If you simply can’t, or don’t want to lock them away, keep them leashed and make sure they are wearing collars with identification tags and/or are microchipped. A leashed dog may well just sit by your side while you’re answering the door and handing out treats -- only you know how well your dog or cat will do on a leash with the children at the door.
On another note, don’t force your pet into a Halloween costume. Some cats and dogs don’t mind being dressed up, while others are afraid of clothing and the accessories that accompany a costume may cause him anxiety. Your dogs and cats are adorable without a costume, don’t you agree?
Halloween is one of the biggest days of the year that pets go missing (second only to July 4th). Keep your pets safe and as stress-free as possible while you and the children in your house and in your neighborhood enjoy the fun of dressing up and collecting treats!
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