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North Hills Monthly

Halloween Pet Safety Tips from Animal Friends

Oct 27, 2016 11:42AM ● By North Hills Monthly magazine

While Halloween can be a very fun holiday, it is also a time to remind pet owners of a few tips from Animal Friends to keep their beloved pets safe and healthy as it can be potentially scary and dangerous time: 

• During trick-or-treating hours, safely confine your companion animal in a room of your house away from the front door. The constant opening of the door provides an easy opportunity for a quick escape outside. Be sure your pet’s identification tags and microchip are up-to-date just in case he or she ever does escape and becomes lost.

• Keep all candy and wrappers out of your pet’s reach. Chocolate and sweeteners like xylitol are poisonous to pets. Some pets like to tear open crinkly wrappers and may ingest foil or paper as a result. If your companion animal does eat a significant amount of candy, call your veterinarian immediately or contact your local poison control center.

• Understand that costumes can be quite scary to your pet. Pets are often suspicious of new things – which is an important instinct that helped their ancestors to survive. Never tease or try to scare a pet while you’re in costume, because even a friendly pet may feel threatened and scratch or bite. 

• Keep jack-o-lanterns and other flammable décor safely out of your pet’s reach.

• Black cats are not evil nor do they hold any special powers, but at this time of year they can fall victim to pranks and cruelty. It is always safer for cats to be kept indoors. However, if your cat does go outside, be sure to keep him or her in the house several days before and after Halloween, especially if he or she is a black cat.

About Animal Friends
Animal Friends is a non-profit companion animal resource center serving the needs of pets and people since 1943. Our progressive programs have been nationally recognized and include humane rescue, shelter and adoption services for over 2,500 pets annually, humane education, pet behavior classes, pet therapy, wellness programs and more. In addition, Animal Friends is leading the way towards ending pet overpopulation in western Pennsylvania through comprehensive, community-wide spay/neuter programming. Animal Friends is supported by donors, volunteers and staff dedicated to ensuring the well-being of companion animals, while ending overpopulation, abuse and unwarranted euthanasia. For more information, visit