Most dogs get very excited every time they hear someone at the door. Who is coming to visit them? Will they be made a fuss off? Your canine companion is eager to find out what new person they may be able to meet. However, when it comes to Halloween, the steady stream of trick-or-treaters means that your doorbell will be ringing off the hook all night long. Unfortunately, this does present several risks to your furbaby and for this reason, many vets recommend that you keep your dog away from the front door during Halloween.
Here is why keeping your dog away from the front door during Halloween is important.
Reason #1 for keeping your dog away from the front door during Halloween: To stop him from running away
If there is one thing that you can definitely expect this Halloween, it is a lot of visitors ringing your doorbell. Trick-or-treating is undoubtedly one of the favorite parts of the holiday for youngsters living in your neighborhood. However, unless you plan on putting candy on the porch and letting them help themselves, this means that you can expect your front door to be opening and closing all night. If you are unlucky enough to have a dog that is always looking for an opportunity to get outside, then this poses an opportunity for your canine pal to escape. However, even if you have a generally placid and laid-back pet pooch, the arrival of strangers, most of which will be in some sort of scary costume, could cause your dog to become frightened and bolt straight out of the front door. In the crowd of children and confusion of the night, it can be difficult to grab him in time and he may dart off into the night.
Unfortunately, many dogs become injured as a result of escaping their home and running away on Halloween. Even if your dog usually has some danger awareness and is good at sticking to the paths while walking, if he is scared his behavior could be unpredictable and this puts him at greater risk of being involved in an accident.
Reason #2 for keeping your dog away from the front door during Halloween: To prevent him from being stolen
Animal thieves operate all year round, but Halloween presents them with a perfect opportunity for them to steal pets. Wearing costumes makes it near-impossible to identify them, and many work in teams, so when you willingly open your door when the bell rings, one distracts you so the other can entice your dog outside, or even grab him if he is anywhere near the front door. Often, the practice is so smoothly executed that owners don’t even realize that their canine pal is gone until they have shut the door and gone back inside. By ensuring that your dog is kept secured in a room well away from the front door, you eliminate the risk of her being stolen in this way.
Reason #3 for keeping your dog away from the front door during Halloween: To stop him from eating the candies
Most people will keep a steady supply of candies and chocolates by the front door ready for trick-or-treaters. However, most of these products contain Xylitol, a sugar substitute that is highly toxic when consumed by animals. Unfortunately, your dog doesn’t realize how poisonous these candied treats are, and they may prove exceedingly tempting for your pet. If your dog is left unsupervised, there is no telling how many trick-or-treat candies he will try and eat. Only a little Xylitol is needed to make him seriously unwell, and since Xylitol is fast-acting, the effects may become apparent in under an hour. If you suspect that your dog has eaten something containing Xylitol, you need to speak to your vet immediately. However, by keeping your dog away from the front door – and anywhere else where candies and chocolate are kept – you can eliminate this risk and keep him safe.
Reason #4 for keeping your dog away from the front door during Halloween: To keep him away from young children
The majority of trick-or-treaters that will visit your home will be young children, and unfortunately, not all kids know how to behave appropriately around animals, especially dogs that they don’t know. The entire moment could be scary for both your canine pal and any children who could be overwhelmed by him – particularly if he is feeling excited and a little hyperactive! Keep them separate by securing your dog in a separate room for the evening.
If you would like further guidance on the preparations that you should take to keep your dog safe this Halloween, our friendly and experienced advisors are on hand to help. Please contact our veterinary offices in Atlanta, GA for more information.