BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - Some Halloween goodies and decorations can be hazardous to companion animals. Kern County Animal Services provided pet owners with some crucial tips to ensure their pets stay healthy and safe.
• Keep pets at home when trick-or-treating.
• Keep pets safely inside, away from trick-or-treaters and other Halloween activities as all of the activity can frighten pets and they can run off into the night.
• Keep pets safe in an enclosed area with a toy and some soothing music.
• Always make sure your pet has proper identification. If they become lost, a collar and tags and/or microchip increase the chances that they will be found and returned to you.
• Do not let your pet eat candy. Candy can be harmful to pets, and chocolate can be fatal to cats and dogs.
• Keep foil and candy wrappers away from pets as these can cause vomiting and could even produce intestinal blockage.
• Don’t put your dog or cat in a costume UNLESS you know he or she loves it. For pets that are dressed up, make sure the costume isn’t annoying or unsafe. It should not constrict the animal’s movement, vision or hearing, or impede the ability to breathe or bark. Look out for small, dangling, or easily chewed-off pieces on the costume that a pet can choke on.
• Never offer or allow your pets to consume alcoholic beverages. Keep drinks out of a pets reach. If ingested, the animal could become very ill and weak and may go into a coma, possibly resulting in death from respiratory failure.
• Keep pets away from decorations such as pumpkins and decorative corn. Although considered relatively non-toxic, these items can cause gastrointestinal upset and may even result in intestinal blockage as well if large pieces are ingested.
• Jack-o-lanterns and candles can quickly singe, burn or set fire to a pet’s fur. Pets can easily knock a lit pumpkin over and cause a fire.
• Keep wires and cords from electric lights and other decorations out of reach of pets. If chewed, pets can experience damage to their mouth from shards of glass or plastic, or receive a possibly life-threatening electrical shock.
“Our pets rely on a daily routine, when that routine is disrupted by lots of noise and commotion they can become frightened or agitated. By following these simple tips parents, children and pets can enjoy a safe and happy Halloween,” stated Shyanne Schull, Interim Director for Kern County Services.