How to have a safe and fun Halloween with your dog—and kids, too.
For many, Howl’oween is the most popular event on the pet calendar. Going trick-or-treating is a wonderful way to have some family fun and spend good quality doggie time together. But let’s get real; it’s not about the tricks, it’s all about the treats.
During the festivities, it’s essential that you keep an eye on all the treats—both coming and going— to prevent your pets from eating anything that could potentially make them sick. You also need to ensure your pets can’t access the kids’ treat stash when no one is looking. (Chocolate is toxic for dogs and candy is as bad for canine teeth as it is for humans.
Fortunately for your canine companions, most doggy bakeries go to town for Howl’oween, making biscuits in all sorts of appropriately festive shapes—witches, bats and ghosts. It is also really easy to make your own. You could even turn the baking into a fun pre-Halloween family event. No doubt your dog will be only too happy to be on hand to taste test.
Author/chef Cheryl Gianfrancesco has a new book called “Doggy Desserts” (CompanionHouse Books) and it features some fun recipes that your dog and neighborhood pooches will enjoy. Below are two of them.
Children should never be in charge of the dog during their neighborhood outings; there are far too many distractions. Holding a flashlight and a candy bag is probably all they can handle. Instead, make sure your dog is on a strong leash with an adult on the other end. You should also be careful about letting your dog go up to a front door in case the resident pooch is not amenable to visiting canines.
In addition, remember that not every dog will like to dress up in full costume, some of which can be really stifling. A fun bandana or a glow-in-the-dark collar and leash are good alternatives for dogs who don’t like wearing a getup but enjoy getting into the spirit of the occasion.
Lastly, be sure to take plenty of water along for your dog to lap up in route and double check that he’s wearing ID.
About the Author: Sandy Robins is the 2013 winner of the “Excellence in Journalism and Outstanding Contribution to the Pet Industry Award.” Her work appears on many of the country’s leading pet platforms, such as MSNBC.com, MSN.com and TODAYShow.com. She is a regular contributor and columnist in multiple national and international publications, including Catster, as well as the author of the award-winning books “Fabulous Felines: Health and Beauty Secrets for the Pampered Cat” and “For The Love of Cats.” Learn more about Sandy on her website or Facebook page. #welovecats