Halloween is one of the most popular holidays of the year. It’s a chance to get together with friends and family, eat sweets, play games and carve pumpkins. As humans, being spooked is part of the fun. But it’s no laughing matter if the noise and scary outfits stress out your pets. Have a pet safe Halloween and bob for apples guilt-free by following these tips.
Create a safe space for your pet
If your pet hears loud noises or sees scary shapes, it’s likely to run for the hills. Creating a safe place for your pet to hide in will help reduce stress levels and prevent it from hurting itself.
Shockproof your home
Close doors and windows and draw curtains to minimise your pet’s exposure to events going on outside.
Never force your pet to wear a costume
Social media is awash with cute creatures in festive outfits, but if your pet shows signs of distress, don’t make it wear a costume.
Walk your dog in daylight hours
Fireworks and trick or treaters come out at night, so plan ahead and get your walk in before the sun sets.
Don’t leave your pet outside
If you’re unsure how your pet will react to the festivities, keep them inside and out the way of the scary sights and sounds.
Paws off human sweets and treats
Trick or treat? It’s likely to be the former if your pet gets its paws on human candy, so keep all goodies out of reach.
Lead by example
It’s tempting to shriek and yell with (mostly pretend) fear, but if your pet senses your excitement, it may increase their stress levels. Keep a calm manner around your pet as much as possible and encourage others to do the same.
Protect pets who live outside
If you’ve got a small animal living in a hutch outside, shield them from loud noises or scary sights. Consider bringing them indoors, covering their enclosure with a blanket or adding extra hiding places.
Sadly, some pets will stress no matter what precautions you take. If this is your pet, seek the help of an animal behaviourist or try the Dog’s Trust fireworks training sound recordings ahead of time to get them normalised to the bangs and whizzes.
Blog by OneKind writer Katherine Dawson.