Tonawanda News

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October 8, 2012

Scaredy cats on Halloween

Tonawanda News — There will be howling, barking, screaming and squawking and that is just from the children. 

Halloween is right around the corner. So much commotion is sure to make even the most composed pets a little nervous. 

Marty Becker, a veterinarian at North Idaho Animal Hospital, said in a “Good Morning America” interview last year that Halloween is the second most common holiday for pets to get lost. With a few weeks to prepare our fur, feathered and scaled pets, we have time to make this Halloween a stress-reduced holiday.

“Trick or treat,” or any combination/elaboration thereof, can be quite scary to our pets, especially when it is yelled at our front door, every few minutes by strangers. 

The clatter costumes make and the crashing of treat bags on the front porch all add to the stress of our pets. Hearing is a powerful sense to our pets and outside noise can be greatly decreased with some forethought.

Placing our pets in a back room or rooms that are farthest away from the candy-dispenser-door is a good start. Rooms that are the most soundproof are ideal. Washing machines, dryers, meditation music, TVs or box fans can all add to the white noise and help block out the external racket.

Most dogs will do best in a crate away from the sight and sounds of visitors and cats should also be locked away. Adding foam cubes, large cardboard boxes or carriers provide the pets extra hiding places to feel protected. 

Securing your pets also decreases the chance of them running out through the constant door opening. 

Black cats are most often victimized on Halloween. 

Making sure that your pets — including indoor-only pets — have proper identification tags for this day is an important step. The Humane Society reports that between 15 percent and 16 percent of dogs and 2 percent of cats come in with identification tags. Remember, pets that have tags become reunited with their caregivers much quicker.

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