Halloween Pet Safety Tips

Halloween can be a tricky time for our furry friends.  While we all want them to join the fun, we understand that safety comes first.

“Halloween can be terrifying,” according to RCHS spokesman John Van Zante. “The bell rings, we run to open the door, people in costumes shout ‘Trick or Treat,’ they take things from us, then run away. We close the door and wait for the next group. For a pet who thinks its job is to protect its house and family, that’s very confusing!”

Here are a few tips that pet owners should keep in mind this Halloween:

  •  Just because your pet enjoys people coming to the door, the children might not want to be greeted by an animal. Find a safe place for your pet to escape noise and commotion.
  • Watch for door dashers! Frightened pets are more likely to take off if given the chance. Outside they’ll just see more trick-or-treaters. If that happens, they’ll either keep running or hide. You DO NOT want to spend Halloween night searching for your pet.
  • What about pet costumes? Make sure they’re safe, fit properly, and do not restrict the pet’s vision. If you’re taking your pet outdoors, the costume should be reflective. DO NOT force your pet to wear a costume it doesn’t want!
  • When it comes to trick-or-treating, it’s usually best to leave your pets at home. But if you insist, make sure Mom or Dad holds the leash at all times and that “Count Barkula” stays back from the door. Even if YOUR dog is okay, the dog inside might feel the need to protect its home.
  • No Candy. Ever! Remember that our pets eat candy, wrappers and all. When you get home and start eating the candy, be sure to dispose of the wrappers safely.
  • Black cats? Halloween isn’t any more dangerous for black cats than any other night. But it’s still hard to see black cats in the dark. Don’t take chances. Keep them safe inside.

Rancho Coastal Humane Society offers Humane Education programs for children to learn about safe pet care and Adoption services for dogs, cats, and rabbits. For more information visit Rancho Coastal Humane Society at 389 Requeza Street in Encinitas, call 760-753-6413, or log on to www.sdpets.org.