Thursday, October 30, 2008

Halloween Safety Tips

From the BCSPCA.

Halloween Can Spook Animals
Some tips to protect animals over the Halloween Season

While Halloween is fun for trick or treaters, it can be a scary and dangerous time for pets and farm animals. "Loud noises can cause animals to panic putting both pets and children in danger," says Lorie Chortyk, Director of Community Relations for the BC SPCA. Farm animals are at risk too. Dogs or cats could dart into traffic or jump through windows, while frightened farm animals could run into barbed-wire fences or other obstructions. Dogs can also act out of character at the sight of strangers in costumes coming to your door.

Keep Your Pet Inside

Prevent your pets from escaping or confronting trick or treaters by keeping them in a quiet room. You may consider disabling your doorbell for the night if your dog is the type that gets excited whenever it rings. Now is also a good time to make sure your pet has identification - a tag and a tattoo or microchip - in case your pet gets lost. Cats need identification too -- indoor cats too -- in case they bolt from fright.

Don't Feed Candy and Chocolate to Pets

"Any sudden diet change will cause stomach upset in your animal," says Dr. Jamie Lawson, BC SPCA Director of Animal Health. "Feeding animals candy can lead to health problems such as diabetes or obesity," says Lawson, "and chocolate is especially dangerous because it naturally contains theobromine, an ingredient which is toxic to cats and dogs."

Loud Bangs Panic Some Animals

Because exploding fireworks can affect pets in varying degrees be sure to spend time consoling your pets whenever there are loud noises. Some dogs will howl, while others might cower and whine. "I've seen cases where a dog has bolted in fear right through a screen door. The dog was gone for days just because of a loud bang," says Dr. Dave Sedgman, veterinarian with Thompson Rivers University, in Kamloops. "In extreme cases animals will try to dig into a hardwood floor or even jump through a plate glass window in fear."

On Halloween night, leave your dog at home while trick or treating; bring dogs and cats indoors; and set off legal fireworks in areas away from pets and farm animals. By thinking about the animals, Halloween will be a safer and stress-free occasion, as well as fun for kids.


Gus, Louie and Callie said...

Thanks for the wonderful tips. We will probably have to spend that time in our condo's so we don't scare the kids although mom would love to put the fear into those big kids that have no business trick or treating. You may have noticed Mom has issues with big kids...

Big Sloppy Kisses
Gus, Louie and Callie

Joe Stains said...

thanks for sharing the useful info!! I think we are just going to hide halloween night :)

Dannan and The Girl said...

We definitely hide on Halloween. I am scared of the fireworks (which are legal and sold to every yahoo who has the money), so we go into the basement, turn up the tv, and run the white noise machine! Oh, and I get magic potion, too. (The Girl: translation - Rescue Remedy. Works like a damn.)

Bobby said...

Good tips here we also have bonfire night and yobs are out throwing fireworks all over on the 5 november. I wish they would ban thm.

Dennis the Vizsla said...

This year we put out a box of candy on the front planter with a sign saying "honor system" so that the kids didn't ring the bell and make the dogs lose their minds every ten minutes. It worked -- no doorbell rings, and there was even some candy left at the end of the night! (I was sure the first one to come along would take it all!)