Ghosts, goblins, and ghouls oh my! As much fun as we have getting a sugar over-load, an adrenaline rush from scary movies and let’s not forget the yummy apple cider; Halloween isn’t always as fun for our pets. In fact, it can be very stressful.
DING DONG THE DOG IS NOT DEAD
The door bell rang and the door knocked every few seconds during the trick-or-treaters’ visit. This can be very overwhelming to many dogs, not to mention seeing humans wearing “weird” outfits. Instead of keeping your dog front and center, I recommend setting up a quiet room away from the fright buzz. Give him something great to chew, like a stuffed Kong or a bully stick. Have background noise playing like THROUGH A DOG’S EAR CD or leave the TV on and the curtains pulled; encouraging your dog to chill.
KEEP YOUR PET AWAY FROM THE LOOT
There are many candies that can be extremely harmful to your pet, so be extra careful to keep the goodies up out of his reach as well as the beautiful candle lit jack-o-lanterns.
Murphy’s law, right? If you plan for it, it won’t happen and when you don’t plan, well, it all goes wrong. If you don’t have one already, please go to your local pet shop and get an ID tag made for your pet. I know this might seem like common sense, but be sure that your pet is wearing his ID during the festivities.
ALL DRESSED UP, BUT DON’T WANT TO GO NO WHERE
As a Tom boy forced to wear dresses growing up, I can empathize. Let’s not expect all dogs to enjoy the costume, people! After all, do you enjoy wearing wool sweaters? Please respect your dog’s wishes.
If a dog is uncomfortable in costume he shows displacement behaviors like:
- Avoiding eye contact
- Shaking as if he’s wet
- Licking lips
- Looking to the side
‘Dogs will show us that they are not enjoying the world’s cutest outfit ever, first by avoiding it. This may be looking away, backing away, running away, attempts at rubbing it off on the walls….take any small effort on your dog’s part to avoid the costume as a sign that work needs to be done associating the ultimate positive experience with the ‘get up’ before trying again.’ Ashley Altimirano, CPDT
Please be safe! I hope that you have so many treasured memories this Halloween season. From my family to yours, blessings ❤
Building the bridge of communication between dogs and pet guardians
Blog Written by Michelle Huntting