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Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, use for entertainment, or abuse in any other way.

Keep Your Animals Safe and Happy This Halloween

The following post is by PETA celebrity marketing coordinator Lauren Gordon.

Each October, Halloween ushers in its own brand of awesomeness in the form of pumpkins, candy, and costumes. Spider webs and creepy decorations set the stage for ghost stories and trick-or-treating. But holiday fun for humans can translate into hazards for companion animals. Halloween is the busiest time of year for the Pet Poison Helpline because companion animals often accidentally ingest Halloween candy or décor. Check out the following tips to help keep your furry friends safe and happy this Halloween season:

  • Keep your animals inside around Halloween and away from the front door during trick-or-treating. Animals can become excited or threatened by visitors, so keep them in a separate and enclosed room where they can remain calm—this also eliminates the risk that they will escape. Don’t leave dogs in the yard because they can escape or be subjected to torment by passersby. As an added precaution, make sure that your animal companions wear identification at all times. And if you’re going trick-or-treating, don’t take your animals with you.
  • Although all cats should be indoor cats, this is even more important during the month of October—especially if you have a black cat. Black cats are often associated with dark forces and are an easy target for Halloween pranksters who commit violent acts against unsuspecting kitties. You can also help black cats this Halloween by supporting PETA’s SNIP mobile clinic.

  • Decorations pose a threat to dogs, cats, and other animals. Keep your animal companions away from jack-o-lanterns, candles, balloons, or other decorations that they could ingest, become tangled in, or be injured by.
  • One of the biggest hazards to four-legged friends during Halloween is candy. Keep candy in secure containers and in an area that your animal companions cannot gain access to. Chocolate is toxic to dogs, and sugary candy can lead to pancreatitis. Raisins, certain nuts, and xylitol (an artificial sweetener found in some gums and candies) can also be poisonous to furry friends. Plus, animals don’t remove the wrappers from candy and may try to eat discarded wrappers—ingesting these wrappers can cause choking or life-threatening bowel obstruction.
  • If you think your animal companion has ingested something, symptoms to watch for include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, not defecating or straining to defecate, agitation, increased thirst, an elevated heart rate, and in severe cases, seizures. Contact your veterinarian or the Pet Poison Helpline immediately.

Do not hesitate to contact your veterinarian or the 24-hour Pet Poison Helpline immediately at 1-800-213-6680 if you suspect that your animal companion has ingested something or might be injured. Keep these numbers on hand for quicker response—the faster that you can get help, the less your animal companion will suffer and the more likely he or she will make a speedy recovery. Learn more about keeping your animal pals safe on Halloween here.

Promise to help keep homeless animals, including cats, safe this Halloween and beyond by signing PETA’s pledge right now!

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  • Anne says:

    Well Halloween is now here and. Ylittle black cat is curled up snoring at my. Side all cosy on my furry throw and that will be her to bed time my cat is a house cat she only goes out with me in the summer when she lies in the back garden basking in the sun but at Halloween she stays inside in the heat as was Spooky who was Born on Halloween. He was my first ever cat he lived till he was 17 and took a stroke and had to be put down that broke my heart but my little black cats safe and cosy

  • lisa says:

    I live in the UK and have 13 rescued cats some of the comments about people using cats for satanic reasons is abit overboard maybe in the USA you have to lock your cats up incase the witches come and get them but here in the UK dont think we have witches or demons one of mine is totally black, my daughter said id best keep her in cos someone might want to use as part of their costume if they dressed as a witch lol, im more concerned them on Bonfirenight thats when i make sure they stay in.

  • Amanda says:

    I have 3 black cats a torti and a long hair grey and white cat, plus an American Eskimo dog, they are my world, and i would do anything for them.. We arent having kids this year, but maybe next to have fun :)

  • Kris says:

    My black kitty Commy (Commet) is my special little boy! He was born to a mother who had distemper and while he doesn’t have it himself he has some nurological issues and is the sweetest thing ever with a streak of cutely naughty! He’s one of ten little furballs and none of them are the same color! I love all kitties!

  • ACE says:

    Outcast– I hope your cat is still safe. I would learn from the first horrible incident where she was bady wounded and keep her indoors. you are RIGHT to worry while she is outdoors. ManKIND is NOT always very KIND. Please keep her indoors.

  • YTK says:

    friendbear – have you ever had to comfort a friend whose beloved black cat was brutlised outdoors, on Halloween night and had to be put to sleep because of its injuries? This is not just an isloated example. This is a truism — and racial prejudice has nothing to do with it. The word “Halloween” is derived from Hallowmas.

  • Alexie says:

    I have a 16 year old black long hair that loves the outdoors. She is allowed out in the morning and once in the evening with supervision but must be in before dark. I will not deny her as she was born on a ranch and is a cat who needs more fresh air and climbing then a indoor situation can give her. If kept in she declines and when she is allowed out to play, climb and enjoy the air she acts 10 years younger. I do keep her in 2 days before and 2 days after Halloween.

  • allison says:

    also please keep an eye on your pitbulls. word has it they are being targeted this year too.

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