Scary creatures, silly costumes, ghoulish decorations and trick-or-treat candy all add to the Halloween fun and festivities for children and adults. For pets, these same activities can be frightening and downright dangerous.
Cathy Sauer is an animal massage therapist based in Central New Jersey. She has made it her life’s work to help animals maintain health and stay calm and relaxed through therapeutic massage techniques.
“There are lots of things that pet owners can do to help their pets through this stressful time,” said Sauer, owner of Chasing Dreams LLC. “For instance, keep pets confined and away from the door on trick-or-treat night. Seeing strangers dressed in unusual costumes knocking on your door repeatedly will make pets anxious. Consider putting your pets in a secure room away from the door and out of sight. This will also prevent them from darting outside in a frightened state while the door is open and getting lost.”
Another thing Sauer warns about are the candy treats given out and left over around the home after the holiday is over.
“All forms of chocolate can be poisonous for dogs and cats,” cautions Sauer. “If your pet ingests chocolate, symptoms may include vomiting, diarrhea, rapid breathing, increased heart rate, and seizures. If you notice your pet has eaten chocolate or suddenly is displaying symptoms, contact your veterinarian or local emergency animal clinic without delay.”
Chocolate is not the only danger. Some candies contain the artificial sweetener xylitol which can cause a sudden drop in blood sugar and subsequent loss of coordination and seizures. Some candies contains nuts and raisins that are not healthy for pets.
It’s a good idea to keep the Pet Poison Helpline number handy where any family member can find it quickly. For assistance call 1-800-213-6680.
Another consideration Sauer cautions about is dressing your pets in costumes.
“Pets look cute dressed in costumes, but they might not enjoy it as much as you do,” said Sauer. “If you dress your pet in a costume, be sure it doesn’t impair vision, movement, or air intake. If the costume contains metallic beads, snaps, or other small pieces, be aware that if ingested, some metals, especially zinc and lead, can result in serious poisoning.”
If your pet becomes noticeably unhappy during Halloween, pet massage is a wonderful way to bring them back to a relaxed and happy state. The stroking, rubbing, kneading or tapping by a trained pet massage therapist will increase circulation, improve muscle tone, increase range of motion and relax the animal.
Cathy Sauer, owner of Chasing Dreams LLC based in New Jersey, is a member of the International Association of Animal Massage Therapists, an association whose member technicians are trained and operate under guidelines specifically designed to achieve the ultimate benefits of animal massage therapy.
Cathy maintains a mobile office and works throughout Hunterdon, Somerset, Morris, Monmouth, Warren and Hudson Counties in New Jersey. Visit her website contact page to arrange an appointment.
Subscribe to be alerted when more articles are published; your email address will not be shared.
Email info@GeminiUniversal.com if you have comments or a story you would like me to share. I currently write as NJ Animal Rescue Examiner, National Cats Examiner, National Pet Health Examiner, and National General Pets Examiner. Follow me on Twitter and visit us on Facebook for news and updates.