Halloween is fast approaching and we are all excited about our fun, festive fall decorations and the spooky skeletons in the front yard. Halloween marks the beginning of the holiday season and it’s always fun to get things started on a good note. So we look for costumes that are better than years past, decorate our homes, and find the best bowl to put the candy in for the big night. It’s such a treat! But when it comes to our pets, it’s best not to let it get too tricky. Let’s keep the scariest part of Halloween your mask by following these quick tips for keeping your pets safe on the spookiest night of the year.

1) Hide the candy

Don’t forget to keep the candy bowl in a place that your pets can’t get into. The last thing you want to be doing on Halloween is taking your pet to the vet. Chocolate as well as sweeteners like xylitol are toxic to pets. Don’t underestimate their nose and their cunning ability to find food. They know where the candy bag is and they will be able to get to it if it’s not out of reach.

2) Don’t Stress Out Your Pet

Halloween brings a lot more visitors to your door than usual and it’s important to think about how that will affect your pet. If your dog is already protective of her space and reacts to the doorbell or knocks at the door, place her in a separate room or think about sitting outside with the door closed while you pass out candy. Just because it’s Halloween doesn’t mean it’s okay to freak your pets out.

3) Be Careful with Decorations

Jack o lanterns lit with real flames could be a potential hazard if your pet happens to knock it over with all the excitement going on. If you have a cat, you know that they are very curious and have also been known to get burned by the flame.

4) Pet Costumes Shouldn’t Cause Discomfort

This is a no brainer but in the excitement of the moment and in an effort to “do it for the gram” we try to get our pets into these costumes that they really don’t like. Most of our pets don’t usually wear clothes so trying to stick a pumpkin costume on them one day out of the year may not turn out the way you envisioned. Shocker. My advice would be to try the costume on beforehand so that your pet is more comfortable in it come Halloween. Or just don’t put one on your pet if you know she won’t like it.

5) Keep your pets safe with ID tags

With the door opening and closing, strangers coming to the house, decorations everywhere, and maybe even a not so comfortable costume on, our pets will be dealing with some level of stress that is more than they are used to. Keep them safe by thinking about how the night’s events will affect them. Also make sure that they have their ID tags on with your phone number just in case they get spooked or overly excited and run off into the night.