Here at HouseMyDog, we love any chance to get dressed up and eat our body weight in sweets, and Howl-oween is no exception. While we’re having fun, it can be a bit stressful for our pooches.
Not only are there lots of lovely smelling treats around the house to gorge on, it’s also not often that the doorbell goes 10 times in one night, less often that it’s monsters at the door rather than people.
Top tips for a happy dog this Halloween
We’ve come up with some tips to help you keep your doggo safe and happy this Halloween. You can thank us in sweets if you like.
Think before you treat
Whether you’re out trick or treating yourself, or eating your 50th Tangfastic while waiting for the doorbell to go, one of the best things about Halloween is all the sweet treats. Our pooches have slightly more sensitive tummies than us, so we’ve come up with a list of foods to keep out of reach from your dog over the spooky season.
Most dogs are inherently attracted to the smell and taste of chocolate, but it contains theobromine, which is highly poisonous for them. The darker and more bitter the chocolate, the worse it is for your pooch, and if they manage to get hold of some it’s likely they’ll become unwell pretty quickly. More for you then.
Forget a sugar rush, large ingestions of sugary, high-fat sweets can actually lead to pancreatitis in dogs, where their pancreas becomes inflamed and very painful. Often symptoms such as vomiting, lack of appetite, and the squits will only emerge after 2-3 days, and in some cases it can be fatal.
Even the sugarfree kind are a no-go as they often contain something called Xylitol which is really harmful to furballs.
Grapes, Currants, Raisins and Sultanas
If you hate children and decide to dole out grapes and raisins, make sure your pooch doesn’t get their paws on them because they are really poisonous to dogs. Even tiny amounts can cause vomiting and diarrhoea at best and kidney failure at worst.
Puppies (and some breeds of dogs, like Beagles) are hoovers on legs. Watch out for stray sweet wrappers, which can not only be a choking hazard, but if swallowed can obstruct your dog’s bowel. If you think your dog has eaten something they shouldn’t, watch out for vomiting, decreased appetite, constipation or straining to poop and general lethargy.
Don’t spook your dog
There are some other things it’s worth being aware of at Halloween too; even if you haven’t got a particularly nervous or territorial dog, the to and fro of trick or treaters might make them nervous.
If you can, keep your pooch in another room away from the front door, give them plenty of cuddles and healthy treats and try not to scold them if they bark or become over-excited. Same in the case of fireworks, but we’ll tell you more about that in another blog post coming up soon.
Choose comfort over style
And finally, if you’re planning on dressing your pedigree as a pumpkin or your mutt as a monster this Halloween, try to avoid costumes that have elasticated necklines, or any loose elements which they can chew and swallow.
Swerve costumes where your dog can wriggle out of it easily; if they get half way and can’t get any further they might over-strain, or it might obstruct their breathing. Plus it’ll totally ruin the look you’re going for.