Halloween and Mr. Whiskers
Posted on 10-11-2012
For weeks now stores have been lining the aisles with candy, costumes, and ghoulish décor. That’s right Halloween is just around the corner. You are probably looking forward to kicking the holiday season off right by picking the perfect costume. No…no…, not for yourself, not even for your child…that’s right, what is Mr. Whiskers going to be sporting October 31st, 2012?
It’s hard not to want to dress up your four legged child. They have so many options today! In fact, Wayfair.com just announced this year’s most popular Halloween costumes for pets. They include:
3.) Lederhosen(think German suspenders)
And if that was not reason enough, Dog Shaming is going viral on the web. Go ahead stop reading and Google it. Some of that is cute, and we have all experienced our pets getting into mischief! You can now share Mr. Whiskers with the entire world through Facebook and Twitter!
In the veterinary field we sometimes wince when this time of year comes around. We see more incidents of candy ingestion, burn accidents, and runaways. So as you are thinking of Mr. Whiskers’ costume remember a few things. First, costumes and face paint can be quite scary for your pet. We think of it as fun, but it all looks, and smells, dangerous to your pet. Many animals suffer from anxiety as strange people coming knocking on your door. Introduce your pet to newcomers slowly and if it seems to be too much, give them a space where they can safely observe from afar. A crate or another room with music or white noise playing may be your best option. Secondly, be careful with candy! Chocolate is toxic to dogs, and even a small amount can cause digestive upset. Xylitol, a common sugar substitute found in candy and gum, is also toxic and cause liver failure and even death. It all smells quite enticing though, so make sure you place your Halloween goodies out of pet reach. Thirdly, costumes and decorations can be a hazard as well. Many decorations we use at Halloween resemble toys that we give our pets to play with. Hanging bats and spiders can look a lot like a cat toy to our feline friends. Dogs that will tear up stuffed animals will often tear apart a costume and eat bits which can cause an intestinal obstruction. So be sure your costumes are close fitting and have no loose bits that can be pulled off. And finally, please be sure not to leave your pets outside! Pets are often the target of pranks and not so playful mischief. Black cats in particular are often targeted this time of year.
Our best method of protecting our pets is monitoring them closely. After all who will be able to resist Mr. Whiskers in that costume? I’ll be watching for his photo on Dog-Shaming.com. and on our FaceBook page. Best Wishes.