Avoid These Scary Halloween Pet Hazards

Is your four-legged friend ready for Halloween? Keep in mind that this holiday brings with it a multitude of potential pet hazards! Here, your Plano, TX veterinarian tells you about a few common dangers and how to best keep your pet safe.

Animal Anxiety

One of Halloween’s biggest dangers is animal anxiety, and it’s likely to crop up during holiday parties and, even more probable, on trick-or-treat night. Many pets get worked up at the sound of the doorbell, so trick-or-treat may be quite a stressful time! Some of our animal companions may even try to dart out of the door when it’s opened for trick-or-treaters. If necessary, put your pet in another room to keep them calm and prevent escape.


Chocolate is found in abundance around the Halloween holiday, and it’s not good for our animal friends. Chocolate of all types, as well as foods made with chocolate, contains theobromine and caffeine. These chemicals don’t agree with our pets and can cause symptoms like lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea, and even coma and death without treatment! Don’t allow your pet access to any chocolate treats.


The same goes for candy as it does for chocolate. Many candies, as well as gum and certain baked items, are sweetened with an artificial sugar called xylitol. This substance has highly toxic properties for animals and can result in vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and worse if a pet doesn’t receive prompt treatment. Don’t let your animal companion anywhere near the trick-or-treat bowl this holiday.


Are you considering dressing your pet up in their own Halloween costume to celebrate the holiday? It’s safest to do a “test run” before the big night. Not all pets take kindly to clothing, especially if an outfit fits loosely or is too snug. Also be sure to check over your pet’s costume and remove any small parts—drawstring caps, buttons, etc.—that could be chewed off, swallowed, or choked on.

Decorative Dangers

Common autumn plants like pumpkins, gourds, and fall corn aren’t necessarily toxic, but they’re not good for our pets to munch on. Not only could these items break apart into chunks that could be choked on, they can cause an upset stomach or vomiting if too much is consumed. Take care to have your pet avoid these decorations.

From all of us here at your Plano, TX veterinary hospital: have a safe, fun, and happy Halloween!

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