Tonawanda News

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October 27, 2013

CRITTER COMPANIONS: The hullaballoo of Halloween

Tonawanda News — Week 2 of homeownership and soon I will potentially have hundreds of people knocking on the door for free handouts. There will be chirping, barking, mooing and squawking and that is just from the children. 

Halloween is a few days away and with so much commotion it is sure to make even the most composed pets a little nervous. There are lots of scary things that take place on this holiday. Halloween is the second-most common holiday for pets to get lost — July 4th ranks the first.

The repetitive bellowing of “trick or treat,” or any combination/elaboration thereof, can be quite scary to our pets. The distinct rattle costumes make and the crashing of treat bags on the front porch all add to the stress of our pets. Hearing is one of our pets’ most powerful senses but luckily outside noise can be greatly decreased with some planning.

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 who have experience with a crate will benefit from the reduced sight and sounds of visitors, placing cats or smaller pets in a room that is secured will also help. Adding foam cubes, large cardboard boxes or carriers provide the pets extra places to hide and feel secluded. Securing your pets also decreases the chance of them running out through the constant door opening. 

Black cats are most often victimized on Halloween. Make sure that your pets, including indoor-only pets, have proper identification tags on Halloween.

Keeping your pet occupied during the trick or treating can also reduce stress. Exercising before the event will help alleviate the critter companion of their extra energy. If the pet sleeps through Halloween, you can be sure that it was a stress-free evening. 

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