Halloween safety tips

Halloween safety tips

dog-halloween-costumes

Halloween can be great fun – we really get into the spirit here in North American, where millions of us adults dress up, and dress up our pets too. But here are some tips to keep it safe for your pets.

Some of the top dangers specific to Halloween are:

  • toxic Halloween candy – chocolate especially is deadly for small dogs like Morkies, and tinfoil and cellophane wrappers can be hazardous if swallowed. Be sure to keep your children’s haul out of the dog’s way.
  • don’t forget raisins – just a few can cause serious health problems for your Morkie including kidney failure, so keep these treats securely out of the way too.
  • lit candles – your Morkie could accidentally knock over a lit candle – consider using a no flame, no mess alternative to light up your jack-o-lantern.
  • wires and cords could harm your dog – dogs love to chew and Morkies are no exception. Make sure all wires and cords from temporary displays and decorations are properly secured and out of reach.
  • constant door bells and strangers – can be very stressful for your Morkie. Sometimes accidents happen and your Morkie might make a run for it when you’re opening the door. Be sure to keep his I.D. on, and ideally keep him quiet and comfortable in another room during the peak of activity.  Like the 4th of July, Halloween is a peak time for runaways according to the ASPCA.

Should dogs wear costumes?

Everyone loves to see dogs in costumes – in fact, most people have dressed up their pooches at some point in their lives.

However, if your Morkie is really resistant to the idea, this much stress might be a bad idea.

Start small – a little hat or a bandana, to get your Morkie used to the idea. Then try a T-shirt. Don’t rush — make it fun.

If your Morkie is anxious or upset in her costume, take it off right away and try later.

Should I take my Morkie trick or treating with us?

If you’re taking both children and a dog on your own that can be a real handful. As small dogs, Morkies can become frightened, and aren’t always as well socialized as large dogs.  My advice – if your kids are older and don’t need constant supervision, or if another adult can come with you, then give it a try.  But be prepared to take your Morkie home when he’s tired or overwrought.

Keeping your Morkie safe

Stick to your dog’s routine

So how do you protect your dog, short of canceling Halloween altogether? First, try your best to stick to the dog’s routine, especially regular walks. An exercised dog is a better behaved dog all round, so grab a walk whenever you can. The bonus – it will help reduce your own stress levels too.

Give your dog some time outs

You may want to remove your dog from the party central action if things get too hectic. A quiet room or his crate, is a far better solution than a stressed-out dog. Don’t assume your partner or someone else is watching the dog; be explicit about who’s in charge and plan ahead for the dog’s needs (a walk in the middle of trick or treating time?  Better reschedule that one).

Plan ahead

For an ounce or two of prevention, make sure your dog has his tag on at all times, with your current phone number on it. Check out which emergency vets will be open in your area that nigiht and stick that number up on the fridge.

One more tip – pumpkin!

Pure, canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling) is a great thing to keep on hand for your dog-in pumpkinn costumeMorkie. Believe it or not, it’s great for both diarrhea AND constipation. Plus it’s loaded with betacarotene which your Morkie’s system converts to Vitamin A. One or two teaspoons a day (no more!) can be very helpful to your little Morkie’s digestion.

Remember however – DO NOT feed:

  • pumpkin seeds
  • raw pumpkin
  • pulp from your raw pumpkin
  • pumpkin pie or pumpkin pie filling

Happy haunting!