Spooky season is right around the corner. As you celebrate trick or treat with the ghosts and goblins, be mindful of your pets’ safety. Consider the following to make this Halloween one filled with loads of treats, instead of tricks, for your fur babies!

Halloween Treats

According to the American Kennel Club, “emergency critical care and toxicology calls to the Pet Poison Helpline increase by over 10 percent during the week of Halloween, making it the call center’s busiest time of the year.”

Bowls are filled with candy as you await that knock on the door, or ring of the bell. If ingested, that candy can be very dangerous for both cats and dogs. 

Those chocolate candy bars, especially the ones made with dark chocolate are highly toxic to your fur babies. In addition, sugar-free candy made with xylitol is also very dangerous. If you think your fur pumpkin may have ingested a toxic substance, call your veterinarian immediately, or the ASPCA Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435.

Jack-o-lanterns and other Halloween Decorations

You have just carved out the most perfect pumpkin and placed the jack-o-lantern in the window for all to see. Kitty decides she wants to play with this fiery creature. Your curious cat is at risk of severe burns. Not to mention, the potential of a house fire. 

Place all Halloween decorations out of the reach of your pets. Watch for heavier decorations that could potentially fall, and for wires from decorative lighting that can be chewed. 

Dress Up

You came across the most perfect Halloween costume for your pet, but is it? Here are a few things to consider before dressing Endora in her witch costume:

  • Stress levels of your pet from wearing a costume
  • Will the costume limit the pet’s physical functions? (i.e., ability to breathe, mobility, sight)
  • Will your pet likely ingest parts of the costume? ) This can cause choking, and/or obstruction).
  • Likelihood the costume may cause physical injury?

Given the above, try the costume on prior to parading him around the neighborhood on Halloween night. If any of the above are likely to be an issue, consider an alternative. A festive leash, and/or bandana will do the trick! 


Those knocks on the door and rings of the doorbell from neighborhood trick or treaters have the potential to stress out your furry vampires. If your pet is not feeling social, keep them in a safe environment and away from the front door. 

This will also help to avoid additional undue stress, keep your pet from running out the door, and also potential biting incidents. 

Additionally, this a great time to talk to your veterinarian about microchipping. Halloween is the second most common holiday for pets to get lost. Of course, we all know the Fourth of July is on top!

Walks during Trick or Treat

Your furry ghost cannot hold it any longer and needs to go for a walk during Trick or Treat. The increased activity outside can cause additional stress. So many people dressed up in costumes and the potential for other dogs can be FREAKY!

Be safe…use a leash! 

Veterinarian Approved Treats

Ok, so now for the good stuff. What to fill a treat bag for your furry monster and her friends? Dr. Bryan from Independence Veterinarian Clinic recommends the following:

  • Rice cakes
  • Cherrios
  • Animal crackers
  • Frozen green beans
  • Homemade dog cookies

Local to Charlotte? Dr. Bryan highly recommends pumpkin dog treats from Pan-Abby. Pan-Abby’s pumpkin spice cookies are made with either homemade oat flour, whole wheat flour or chickpea & coconut flour, pumpkin, egg, honey and cinnamon. “They’re so delicious I sneak some myself.”  

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