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Halloween Tips for Pets & Pet Costumes

by recycler on October 27, 2011

Make sure pet costumes are loose around the neck.

Halloween is a fun event. Everyone gets to dress up and pretend to be something they aren’t. Even our cuddly pets get to be a part of the action.

Every year millions of pet costumes are sold. In fact, the Halloween pet costume business is a $300 million industry. People don’t want their precious pets to miss out on the Halloween fun.

But is it really fun for the pets? That depends on your pets’ demeanor. Are your little fur babies social? Do they enjoy wearing clothing and dressing up? Each animal has his/her own personality.

Here are some tips to help keep your baby safe and make sure your animal has an enjoyable experience:

Costume:

- If your animal does not normally wear clothing, you are going to need to get them used to wearing anything you try to dress them up with. You actually have to desensitize them to something new by letting them sniff it and get familiar with the scent. Otherwise, your pet is going to be tearing at whatever you put on them. Particularly, if it is on his/her head.

Desensitizing can be a slow process of getting the animal familiar baby step by baby step, so it’s advised that you start trying at the beginning of October, rather than waiting until the last minute and potentially traumatizing your pet, if you force the outfit on to him/her.

- When choosing a costume, make sure there aren’t any large parts that could have the potential to be chewed off. For one, it will mess up the look of the costume, but more importantly, it could potentially get stuck in your animal’s throat.

- Make sure anything that your pet is going to be in contact with is clearly marked as ‘nontoxic,’ including paints, dyes, fabrics or even paints. (Don’t try to dye your poodle. It can be traumatic to the pet and dyes are often toxic to animals.)

- It is your responsibility to make sure your pet is supervised at all times he/she is wearing a costume.It is your job to make sure the costume isn’t too tight, especially around the neck, but also not loose enough that it’s hanging off and causing your little furball to trip.

Going Out:

- If you decided to take your pet out with you while you go trick-or-treating or just for a walk around the neighborhood, make sure he/she is on a leash and that they have proper identification.

- Understand that your pet may get scared. There will be a lot more strangers, noise and unusual looking costumes. Give him/her confidence by show them that everything is okay and treating it like any other time you would take your pet out with you.

- Make sure your pet doesn’t find any discarded candy on the ground while you are out trick-or-treating. Beware of potential food hazards that could be toxic. Chocolate is particularly a dangerous food toxin to dogs, so make sure to keep it away.

- Don’t let your pets get too close to jack-o-lanterns with open flames inside. Cats are naturally curious and a mishap could easily occur.

- Don’t forget a bag for waste. It’s common courtesy…and no one wants to clean up after your pet.

If You Stay In:

- A lot of the previous tips are applicable whether you stay in or go out. However, if you stay in on Halloween, don’t leave your pet outside. You never know just exactly what group of kids are going to come by your house. You don’t want your pet to potentially become the victim of a prankster.

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