Prepping Our Pets for the 31st

By: Contribute Last Updated: October 29, 2009

Halloween is almost here!  We have candy in the bowl placed by the door and our costumes ready to go.  The pumpkins are carved, seeds are baked, and the jackolantern is glowing on the front porch. There's a bit more prepping however that we have yet to do-- but its not for Logan or I, or for the neighborhood kids-- it's for the pets!

It is becoming more and more popular to dress pets up in costume.  For dogs, there are costumes far ranging!  There are lobsters and pirates, hot-dogs and ballerinas. Unless they're on clearance however, I still can not bring myself to shell out the $20 for one of these doggie costumes, never the less $40 for two! So it's time to get creative. (Due to safety reasons, it's never good to dress your dog in clothes made for children. Always make sure they can move comfortably in whatever clothes they're sporting.)

Both Hayzel and Reba are short haired dogs.  We have to keep them appropriately clothed to stay warm in the winters! I like to purchase their winter coats with Halloween in mind.  Hayzel has a white pea coat with navy buttons and trim.  She goes as Jackie O. Reba has a navy pea coat with red trim and brass buttons.  She goes as a sailor.  Robbie's costume I got on clearance. He has a lion hat, but he hates it.

It's not a bad idea to keep your cats indoors on Halloween, especially if you have a black cat like Robbie.  Any cat can be curious about a flickering flame inside a jackolantern.  If the doorbell causes the dogs to go nuts, consider seperating the cats from the dogs.

We're planning on keeping the dogs indoors too (behind a baby gate confined to the kitchen so we don't have to worry about them by the door). We're going to keep all the animals occupied with some new bones and toys to help them pass the time. This will also help create a positive association with the holiday.  Since we have no kids we won't be taking the girls door to door.  If you're considering this for your pooch though, be sure your dog is well trained, socialized, and has all their ID tags up to date and at least two forms on!

Last but not least, stash any Halloween candy in a place unaccessible to the animals. Chocolate and gum can be most harmful to animals, especially if they contain Xylitol or theobryomine.  If you have kids, be sure they realize that sharing is nice, but not sharing candy with the pets.

As we get our pets ready for Halloween, think about preparing for the unexpected as well- not necessarily around the 31st. Natural Disasters are part of any season, and it's best to be ready just in case. So if you're heading off to the pet store to find a puppy costume, take a look at the FEMA Guidelines to help plan for pet disaster needs and stock up accordingly while you're there!