The following post is by PETA celebrity
marketing coordinator Lauren Gordon.
Each October, Halloween ushers in its own brand of awesomeness in the
form of pumpkins, candy, and costumes. Spider webs and creepy decorations set the stage for ghost
stories and trick-or-treating. But holiday fun for humans can translate into
hazards for companion animals. Halloween is the busiest time of year for the Pet Poison Helpline because companion animals often accidentally ingest Halloween candy or décor.
Check out the following tips to help keep your furry friends safe and happy
this Halloween season:
- Keep your animals inside around Halloween
and away from the front door during trick-or-treating. Animals can become
excited or threatened by visitors, so keep them in a separate and enclosed room
where they can remain calm—this also eliminates the risk that they will escape.
Don’t leave dogs in the yard because they can escape or be subjected to torment
by passersby. As an added precaution, make sure that your animal companions
wear identification at all times. And if you’re going trick-or-treating, don’t take
your animals with you.
- Although all cats should be indoor
cats, this is even more important during the month of October—especially if
you have a black
cat. Black cats are often associated with dark forces and are an easy
target for Halloween pranksters who commit violent acts against unsuspecting
kitties. You can also help
black cats this Halloween by supporting PETA’s SNIP mobile clinic.
- Decorations pose a threat to dogs, cats, and
other animals. Keep your animal companions away from jack-o-lanterns, candles,
balloons, or other decorations that they could ingest, become tangled in, or be
- One of the biggest hazards to four-legged friends during
Halloween is candy. Keep
candy in secure containers and in an area that your animal companions cannot
gain access to. Chocolate is toxic to dogs, and sugary candy can lead to pancreatitis.
Raisins, certain nuts, and xylitol (an artificial sweetener found in some gums
and candies) can also be poisonous to furry friends. Plus, animals don’t remove
the wrappers from candy and may try to eat discarded wrappers—ingesting these
wrappers can cause choking or life-threatening bowel obstruction.
- If you think your animal companion has ingested
something, symptoms to watch for include vomiting, diarrhea,
lethargy, not defecating or straining to defecate, agitation, increased thirst,
an elevated heart rate, and in severe cases, seizures. Contact your
veterinarian or the Pet Poison
Do not hesitate to
contact your veterinarian or the 24-hour Pet Poison Helpline immediately at
1-800-213-6680 if you suspect that your animal companion has ingested something
or might be injured.
Keep these numbers on hand for quicker response—the faster that you can get
help, the less your animal companion will suffer and the more likely he or she will
make a speedy recovery. Learn more about keeping your animal pals safe on
Article source: PETA Action Alerts