Halloween can be a fun time of year for children of all ages, but there are dangers that could be harmful to your pet. Please consider these tips for keeping your family safe and healthy this week.
- Halloween treats – Your children will likely bring loads of candy into your home this week. I know my child will try to consume most of it in one night. One of the most dangerous chemicals your pet can consume is chocolate, especially a dark chocolate. Other items that can make a pets sick are raisins, macadamia nuts and, of course, all the little plastic wrappers that these wonderful treats come in. If you find your pet has consumed any of these items, or is acting strange in any way, give us a call right away at (757) 898-8433. Other important phone numbers to keep close by are the ASPCA Poison Control 1-800-548-2423 or Pet Poison Hotline 1-800-213-6680. (There is a charge to contact both poison control centers.) If you have an after-hours emergency, contact the Peninsula Animal Referral Center at (757) 874-8115 or www.parcvets.com
- Pet Safety – Many pets stress easily with extra people in their home. If your pet is nervous around strangers, it may be best to give them a quiet area during Halloween parties or trick or treating hours. An upstairs bedroom or heated garage may be more comfortable for your pet while small, costumed being invade your home. Don’t forget to check on your pet often. Also, if you have a black cat who normally roams the neighborhood, it’s best to keep him/her inside around Halloween. Unfortunately, Halloween is a time when people do some strange things. We do not want to see any cats harmed this Halloween.
- Children’s Safety – If you do wish to have your pet participate in the festivities, consider the safety of children and strangers. Many dogs like to jump up to greet guests, or play bite. This may not go well with some children . . . or their parents. Also, if your pet is nervous around strangers already, their behavior may not be as predictable in a stressful situation. Some children may not have been taught how to properly approach dogs and cats and may provoke a bite. To prevent injury, and a possible complicated situation with one of your neighbors, it may be best to keep your four-legged friends in a separate part of your home or in a crate where children cannot get too close.
The doctors and staff of Grafton Animal Hospital hope everyone has a safe and Happy Halloween.