26 October 2010

Halloween tips for pet owners

Halloween is one of America's favorite holidays, but it can be a dangerous holiday for pets. Dr. Ron DeHaven, American Veterinary Medical Association chief ...

Halloween is one of America's favorite

holidays but it can be a dangerous one for your pets the American Veterinary Medical Association has some tips on how you can ensure that this Halloween is a safe one for your pets hi I'm dr. Rhonda Haven chief executive officer at the American Veterinary Medical Association Halloween is a time of tricks and treats the tricks can be varied but the treats often contain chocolate many of us already know that chocolate is poisonous to pets cocoa one of the ingredients in chocolate is the culprit the darker the chocolate the more cocoa it contains and hence the more dangerous it is to our pets baking chocolate is perhaps the most toxic it's important to consider the amount of chocolate that a dog eats in comparison to the size of the dog so for example a small dog that eats a large amount of dark chocolate would be in a particularly dangerous situation on the other hand a large dog that eats a small piece of milk chocolate might not have any problems at all chocolate unfortunately isn't the only thing in candy that could be dangerous to your pets sometimes dogs will eat candy whole including the rapper's lollipop sticks or anything else that

might be attached this can lead to an intestinal blockage and that might not be evident for days xylitol which is a sweetener common in baking goods chewing gum and some candies has been found to be poisonous to dogs as well when your kids come home after a night of trick-or-treating and dump their bag of candy be sure that your pets are safely away in another room away from your kids loot and be sure that you store that candy somewhere safe where your pets can't have access to it when you're not around or not at home if you find out later that your pets in fact have gotten into the candy be sure to contact your veterinarian immediately it could be a deadly situation if you suspect that your pet has been exposed to a poison of any kind be sure to immediately contact your veterinarian a local animal emergency center or contact the ASPCA poison control hotline number that hotline is eight eight eight four two six four four three five a quick response could save your pets life some people even like to dress their pets up in costumes for Halloween and may even take them with them

trick-or-treating well just like costumes on kids a costume on a pet should fit properly make sure that it doesn't obstruct your pet's vision ability to breathe or ability to move about freely avoid pieces that are attached to the costume that your pet might chew on or even swallow Halloween night is not the best time to put the costume on your pet for the first time get it early and get your pet accustomed to wearing it never leave your pet alone while wearing that costume and if you want to take your pet with you trick-or-treating make sure that your pet has good leash manners and is not aggressive towards people or other animals for dogs that won't be going trick-or-treating on Halloween it can still be a particularly stressful evening consider a parade of strangers wearing strange costumes and continually ringing the doorbell that can unnerve even the most mild-mannered pet some dogs or cats might try to slip out into the night becoming lost or even worse the victims of Halloween pranks so during those trick-or-treating hours it's best to keep your animals away from the front door and preferably in a

separate room be sure that they have proper identification so that if they do escape you're much more likely to be reunited with your pet and finally be careful with Halloween decorations a pet could knock over a pumpkin with a lit candle and potentially could start a fire if you already know that your pet is going to be totally stressed out on Halloween consult your veterinarian there's a number of potential solutions including training and even medication and for that particularly frightful pet you might consider boarding it somewhere for the evening totally away from that stressful situation well if you need more information please go to our website at ad a org I hope each and every one of you has a happy and safe Halloween and thank you for joining me again on AVMA TV