5 safety tips to follow for your pets this Halloween season | SierraSun.com

5 safety tips to follow for your pets this Halloween season

Dr. Gina Kang
Special to the Sun-Bonanza

TRUCKEE, Calif. — It's that time of year again — Halloween is almost upon us. With that in mind, here are some tips to keep your pets safe and healthy during this fun holiday:

1. Chocolate: Most dog owners are aware that chocolate can be toxic to dogs, but the type of chocolate and dose a dog gets is important to consider. Dark chocolates tend to be more toxic, especially for smaller dogs under 20 pounds. If you think your dog has ingested chocolate please call your veterinarian and/or the APCA Poison Control Center.

2. Xylitol Containing Foods: More candy and gum products contain the non-caloric sweetener, xylitol. Unfortunately this additive can be toxic to dogs and cause liver damage. Please keep all xylitol containing items away from your dog.

3. Costumes and Decorations: Some costumes may look like toys to some dogs, and they may want to chew and eat them. If your pet likes to chew and destroy toys, keep them away from decorations, as an intestinal foreign body can turn into an expensive emergency surgery.

4. Increased anxiety: If your pet gets overly anxious with the constant doorbell and activity with the front door, you may want to have him/her evaluated by your veterinarian for a sedative or anti-anxiety medication. These medications should be tested before the big day. Consider housing your pets in another area of the house to avoid the risk of them running out the door.

5. Proper identification: When doors constantly open for trick-or-treaters, the risk of your pet running loose increases. Consider leaving your pet at home for the evening. If you do decide to bring your pet for trick-or-treating, ensure your pet has proper tags, identification, proper lighting, and/or a microchip.

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Please visit the ASPCA website at aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control for more information regarding pet toxins.

Dr. Gina Kang, DVM, MS, lives in Truckee and works at the Doctor's Office for Pets on 10939A Industrial Way No. 101, Truckee. She sees all pets including cats, dogs, reptiles, birds and small mammals. More information can be found at doctorsofficeforpets.com or at 530-587-5144.