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Halloween Safety Tips

Halloween Safety Tips

Which popular Halloween treats are most harmful to pets?

Your pet may keep begging for a bite of your Snickers or Twix, but when your dog or cat is near, it’s important to keep all types of candy out of reach. Of all the treats on Halloween, dark chocolate, baking chocolate, and even milk chocolate are the most harmful to your pet. Chocolates contain a particularly toxic ingredient known as methylxanthines, which includes theobromine and caffeine. These ingredients cause most dogs and cats to develop severe symptoms, and possibly acute kidney failure. Other trick-or-treat candies that are dangerous to dogs/cats are many hard candies, lollipops, and mints. Most of those candies include a toxic ingredient: xylitol, which is a common sugar substitute. Large amounts of xylitol can cause hypoglycemia, liver failure, and even death in your animal. If your furry companion ever experiences any symptoms of poisoning, contact the Animal Poison Control Center right away.

How can I keep my pets safe during Halloween?

There are many simple tasks you can do to ensure both you and your pet have a fun time on Halloween. Animals, such as cats or dogs, have very curious noses, so make sure to stash away all candy bags and candy bowls from within their reach. Lastly, if you see them experiencing any discomfort or unusual symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, or excessive urination, they might
have found a candy bar lying around somewhere. If you have any suspicions of candy poisoning in your animal, again, make sure to contact your veterinary care physician or the Animal Poison Control Center.

What other dangers can harm pets during Halloween?

In addition to keeping your pets away from Halloween treats, it is also important to keep them away from your decorations. Pets can easily knock over a lit jack-o-lantern or candle and start a fire. Popular Halloween plants such as pumpkins and decorative corn may also produce stomach discomfort in pets who nibble on them. The flurry of visitors at your front door during peak
trick-or-treating hours can also be scary or stressful for some pets, so make sure that they are accounted for! If your pet manages to escape during Halloween activities, make sure to have them wear proper identification. Finally, always keep an eye out for candy wrappers that may find themselves on the ground and in the mouths of your furry friend.

Are costumes safe for pets to wear?

Have your pet wear a costume for prolonged periods of time may cause undue stress. The ASPCA recommends that you do not put your pet into a costume unless you are certain that they are okay with it. Make sure that the costume isn’t too small or awkward as to limit their movement, sight, or ability to breathe. Also, check for dangling or easily chewed-off pieces of clothing to prevent choking. Oversized ill-fitting outfits can also get caught and tangled on external objects which may lead to injury so make sure that they fit just right! Also, do not leave your pet unattended with a costume. Again, loose material may be a choking hazard.

Autumn/Fall Pet Allergies

Autumn/Fall Pet Allergies

As the days get shorter and the weather gets cooler, here are 8 pet allergies that occur during the autumn/fall months:
Mothballs:

Although moths are more prevalent during the fall months, stay away from using mothballs as they can contain chemicals that pose harm to your pets. Some healthier and more environmentally friendly alternatives include sachets with cedar chips, lavender or cloves.

Rodenticides:

Rodents like to spend their winters in cozy warm places. As they scope out their spot in the fall, keep in mind that rodenticides are not just harmful to rodents, but to your pets as well. Make sure to speak with a professional and use pet-safe solutions to prevent any poisoning or serious medical issues.

Antifreeze:

Make sure to wipe up any drips of antifreeze as just a small amount ingested could lead to serious and immediate health issues in your pet. In the event that your pet licks it, call a veterinarian clinic immediately.

Leptospirosis:

This is a disease caused by Leptospira bacteria, which live in moist soil and stagnant water. It is most common during fall months because of the rainy season. If your pet comes in contact with urine-contaminated soil, water, food or bedding that contains this bacterial strain, they may be at risk of contracting this disease. This is also not limited to rural areas but can be spread by raccoons, rodents, and possums in the urban and suburban areas. Luckily, this is preventable! Get your pet vaccinated for this disease. 

Parasites:

Even as the winter months approach, parasites such as fleas and ticks still remain a threat despite the cooler temperatures. Although the weather is constantly changing, it’s a good idea to maintain your pet’s wellness with an effective flea or tick treatment plan year round.

Fall veggies:

As the autumn holidays come near and we gear into fall harvest mode, your furry friends become more susceptible to potential dangers. One of the many ways you can ensure your beloved animals’ health is by storing away any vegetables that may be toxic to your pets such as onions, leeks, or garlic. On the contrary, there are also many seasonal vegetables that can be beneficial for your pet’s health. Some examples of autumn foods you can feed your pet are apples (without the seeds), cranberries, canned pumpkin, cooked sweet potatoes, and even butternut squash when cooked correctly. These vegetables offer a variety of nutrients, minerals, fibers, and anti-inflammatory attributes that are both safe and healthy for animals.

Halloween candies:

Having candy during the holiday treat season is an ongoing tradition, but it poses many life-threatening problems to your pets. It’s important to ensure that there are no candy wrappers, chocolates, or other halloween treats lying within your pets’ reach. Chocolate is toxic to pets and many other treats such as gum, chewy candy, and bite-size hard candy contain artificial sweeteners that are extremely dangerous to all animals. 

Mushrooms:

During the rainy season, wild mushrooms are commonly found in areas that your pet may roam around in. It is extremely hard to tell toxic mushrooms and regular mushrooms apart, so it’s safer to just keep your pet away from all mushrooms. If you suspect that your pet has ingested any mushrooms, contact your veterinarian right away.

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