Please note:

We hope that you enjoy the DOT posts and the different views from everyone included. We promise lots of cute pictures, laughter, maybe a tear or two, and some information. Please note that the views and opinions expressed here are each author's own and do not necessarily represent DOT as a whole.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Safety Tips

Can you believe it is already October 15th? Halloween is only a little over two weeks away. I was reminded of this when checking out one of my favorite sites for my daily chuckle, and saw this picture:

As many of us participate in the activities surrounding Halloween in one manner or the other whether actually dressing up our dogs or passing out treats to little goblins or princesses, I thought I would do a little research for suggested tips to keep our pets safe.

There are several sites that do list some tips/guidelines for us and here are the ones from

1. No tricks, no treats: That bowlful of candy is for trick-or-treaters, not for Scruffy and Fluffy.
Chocolate in all forms—especially dark or baking chocolate—can be very dangerous for dogs and cats. Symptoms of significant chocolate ingestion may include vomiting, diarrhea, hyperactivity, increased thirst, urination and heart rate—and even seizures.
Candies containing the artificial sweetener xylitol can be poisonous to dogs. Even small amounts of xylitol sweetener can cause a sudden drop in blood sugar, which leads to depression, lack of coordination and seizures. In cases of significantly low blood sugar, liver failure has been known to occur. Ingesting tin foil and cellophane candy wrappers can pose a choking hazard or cause intestinal blockage.

2. Popular Halloween plants such as pumpkins and decorative corn are considered to be relatively nontoxic, yet they can produce gastrointestinal upset should pets ingest them. Intestinal blockage could even occur if large pieces are swallowed.

3. Keep wires and cords from electric lights and other decorations out of reach of your pets. If chewed, your pet could experience damage to his mouth from shards of glass or plastic, or receive a possibly life-threatening electrical shock.

4. A carved pumpkin certainly is festive, but do exercise extreme caution if you choose to add a candle. Pets can easily knock a lit pumpkin over and cause a fire. Curious kittens especially run the risk of getting burned or singed by candle flames.

5. Dress-up can be a big mess-up for some pets. Please don't put your dog or cat in a costume UNLESS you know he or she loves it (yup, a few pets are real hams!). For pets who prefer their “birthday suits,” however, wearing a costume can cause undue stress.

6. If you do dress up your pet, make sure the costume isn't annoying or unsafe. It should not constrict the animal's movement or hearing, or impede his ability to breathe, bark or meow. Also try on costumes before the big night. If your pet seems distressed, allergic or shows abnormal behavior, consider letting him go au naturel or donning a festive bandana.

7. Take a closer look at your pet’s costume and make sure it does not have small, dangling or easily chewed-off pieces that he could choke on. Also, ill-fitting outfits can get twisted on external objects or your pet, leading to injury.

8. All but the most social dogs and cats should be kept in a separate room away from the front door during peak trick-or-treat visiting hours. Too many strangers can be scary and stressful for pets.

9. When opening the door for trick-or-treaters, take care that your cat or dog doesn't dart outside.

10. IDs, please! Always make sure your dog or cat has proper identification. If for any reason your pet escapes and become lost, a collar and tags and/or a microchip can increase the chances that he or she will be returned to you

Other sites that have helpful information are:

No matter how you celebrate, have a howling, and safe, good time!

Happy DOT's,

Tina, HoneyDew and Sampson too


Rose said...

Great post...very timely also. Fortunately where I live, I have no kids trick or treating (over 55 community). And I don't even go anywhere or celebrate Halloween, so Maggie is pretty safe. But good article for those involved!

Sue said...

Excellent suggestions. Sometimes with all the confusion we forget how frightening this night can be to pets. It's good to think ahead and have an action plan for their safety.

Anonymous said...

Good morning Tina, This was a great post! I like all of the tips you gave us and the links to the various sites. Thank you. I hope you and your pet have a great halloween!

Swampechaun said...

Love it! I can't wait to see all the DOT pooches in their costumes!

Ella Blackhart said...

I loved the pic! Very funny!

Here's my first ever entry

I didn't know artificial sweetener xylitol can be poisonous. Thanks.

Channon said...

Great post! We're lucky to live in the woods where we're insulated from some of those things. We don't hand out candy either...

Serendipity said...

What a great post! Thanks for sharing all the tips and suggestions. And thanks for the laugh! It's really hilarious.

Sonya said...

I have been out of the loop for sometime. Had to share our new addition to the family.

Sunny said...

Great post, Tina! Thanks for all the precautions. I think the main thing I would have to be concerned about is Bailey getting out of the house and some little kid liking all the attention from Bailey and want to take him home!

Thea said...

Thanks for the great information.

dogquilter said...

Thank you for the info!