Help this Halloween be fun for you and less scary for your pets.  Chocolate can be toxic for pets causing vomiting, diarrhea, increased heart rate and severe cases, seizures and death.  There are also many products that contain Xylitol (pronounced Zi-luh-tohl), a sugar alcohol sweetener used in many common products such as chewing gum, candy, mints, and sugar free baked goods.  It is VERY harmful to dogs and ferrets, causing low blood sugar, seizures and liver failure.  Signs can occur in less than 30 minutes after ingestion and include depression, loss of coordination and vomiting.  If you suspect that your pet ingested a product containing Xylitol, consult your veterinarian immediately.

Candy wrappers such as tin foil and lollipop sticks can be dangerous if ingested, causing intestinal blockage that can rupture the intestines.

Dressing your pet up for Halloween? As cute as he’ll look dressed up for the big night, wearing a costume can be stressful for your pet if they’re not used to wearing clothes.  Be sure it fits properly and your pet is comfortable.  During trick-or-treating hours, think about putting your pets in a quiet room with food, water, some toys and a litter box if necessary.  The continual doorbell ringing and strange people in costumes could be potentially stressful for even the calmest pet, causing them to experience stress-related diarrhea.  Keeping your pet in a separate room can also prevent your pet from darting out of the house while you are handing out candy.

Halloween decorations can be potential dangers as well.  That jack-o-lantern with the candle can turn into a fire by a wayward tail or a too curious cat if not kept out of reach.  Electrical cords should also be kept out of reach to avoid cuts, burns or a life-threatening electrical shock.

Following a few precautions can ensure that your pet can have a safe and stress-free Halloween.