Halloween is quickly approaching, and while it can be a festive, enjoyable time of year for pets and their parents (see our previous article on Funny Dog Costumes for some great ideas!), the somewhat hectic nature of trick treating and Halloween celebrations can also prove to be stressful and even dangerous for our furry friends. Keeping both fun and safety in mind, we’ve put together a few suggestions for maximizing the holiday celebrations while also keeping your dog(s) safe and happy.
No matter how cute your little guy or gal may look on Halloween, the most important thing you can do as a pet parent is keep him or her safe on the holiday. Changes in routine and different foods and home décor can pose hazards for your dog. For example, certain foods that are okay for humans can be quite dangerous. According to Pet Poison Helpline’s website, chocolate, grapes, raisins, too many sweets, and even candy wrappers can pose hazards to your dog. Keep treats out of reach and keep in mind that with lots of activity and noise, your dog may be more anxious and therefore more creative in finding ways to access hazardous snacks. If your pet will be unsupervised, take the time to put people food and drinks away.
Speaking of pet supervision, it may be helpful to come up with a plan ahead of time on how you’ll navigate Halloween with your pet. For example, if you are planning to stay in and hand out candy, will your pet be okay with the constant opening and closing of the door? Or will he or she possibly try and get out? You may want to set up baby gates or other boundaries indoors to keep your pet in a secure area. If your dog is highly excitable you could even leave a bowl of treats on the porch for the little goblins with a friendly sign to avoid constant knocking and/or doorbell ringing. Or if you will be going trick or treating or out to a Halloween event, you might consider either taking your pet with you or setting up pet sitting so she’s not all alone and subject to noise, commotion, or any other mischief on Halloween night. Just to be on the safe side, you can also make sure you have your vet’s contact info on hand and that your dog’s ID tag is updated with a current address and phone number.
Additionally, when decorating for the holiday keep your pup in mind. Candles can easily be tipped over by a curious dog and a jack-o’-lantern may be no match for your dog’s wagging tail. A little planning when placing décor can go a long way. Also, Pet Poison Helpline notes that even glow sticks and glow jewelry can cause trouble for a dog that likes to chew (let’s be honest… what dog doesn’t like to chew?).
HAVE FUN TOGETHER!
Once you have the important safety pieces in place, why not consider ways to enjoy Halloween with your pet? As mentioned above, you can include him by choosing a fun costume; if he’s comfortable with crowds he can even go trick or treating or to other holiday celebrations with you. Another option is to set up on the porch or in the front yard with your pet to welcome trick or treaters so she feels included and gets to socialize, too. Holidays are about recreation, celebration, and enjoying time with loved ones, and with a little planning you and your pup can have a great, safe time no matter what your plans are on Halloween!
Images courtesy KOMUnews
Written by Noelle L Published by Maggie B
Halloween is almost here and there are lots of great events for you and your dog around Santa Monica today through Monday.
< < < LUCY THE GROUCH!
Friday, October 28
4th Annua l Howl-O-Ween Bash, will be held at Healthys pot at 7 p.m. with gift bags for the first 100 dogs, costume contests for best dressed dog, owner, and pair. Raffles, silent auction, refreshments, and appetizers. All donations will benefit Thumping Tails Animal Rescue Bill Foundation. 1110 Wilshire Blvd. 310.458.2004, healthyspotonline.com
Saturday, October 29
House of Restless Spirits, will be open in 2011 for three nights only, today Oct. 29 from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m., and Sunday and Monday, Oct. 30 and 31, from 7 p.m. until 10 p.m. Visitors follow a self-guided route around the outside of the house. Free. 1008 Euclid St. houseofrestlessspirits.com
Pumpkin Decorating, will be held at Santa Monica Pico Farmer’s Market from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Locally grown, bright orange round pumpkins are the perfect canvas for glitter and googly eyes. Virginia Avenue Park, 2200 Virginia Ave. 310.458.8712
Sunday, October 30
2nd Annual Pet Halloween Parade and Costume Contest, there will be a Doggie Halloween parade from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Register at pet boutique at 1123 Montana Ave. $5 per pet. unleashthebeach.org/2011/10/doggie-halloween-parade.html
Monday, October 31
20th Annual PAL-loween, Palloween provides a fun and safe place for kids to be on Halloween, featuring costume contests, trick-or-treating, games family fun and more from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Free. Barker Hangar. 3021 Airport Ave. www01.smgov.net/hsd/PAL.htm
Halloween Celebration at The Market, visit Santa Monica Place for a family-friendly Halloween pre-party before sundown. Fun activities and entertainment for children, and pets, plus specials throughout The Market from 3:30 p.m. to 5: 30 p.m. (3rd level Dining Deck). 395 Santa Monica Place. 310.260.8333, themarketsmp.com
Haunted Theater Party, at M.I.’s Westside Comedy Theater. Grab your capes and jump on your broomsticks for Westside Comedy’s Haunted Theater at 8 p.m. There will be a parade of ghosts, ghouls, and goblins until 12 a.m. 1323-A 3rd Street Promenade. 310.451.0850, westsidecomedy.co