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Reducing your dog’s anxiety on Halloween

Reducing your dog’s anxiety on Halloween

Halloween can be a fun holiday for humans, but with an endless parade of kids coming to the door, loud noises and scary costumes, it can be a stressful time for our furry friends.

Here are some tips and tricks to make your pup’s Halloween less frightful.

1. Make a Safe Space
With trick-or-treaters banging on your door, your dog can quickly become more and more anxious as the night goes on. If they bark or hide every time there’s someone at the door, that is a sign they may be stressed out.

If this is the case, consider putting your dog in a secure, comfortable room where they can lie down and relax. The room should be as far from the door as possible to reduce the noise from trick-or-treaters and the sound of the door opening and closing. This will also prevent the possibility of your dog bolting outside when they get scared.

Remember to check-in on your pup frequently to make sure they’re relaxed and take them out for potty breaks.

2. Take Your Dog Out for Some Exercise
One of the best ways to help your dog relax is to give them plenty of exercise beforehand. Tiring your dog out will help them rest easier and maybe even sleep through some of the anxiety-causing noises. Exercise also stimulates the production of serotonin, the same chemical that makes you feel good after a workout.

Bonus, you and your pooch have an excuse to play at the park for hours on end, and who doesn’t love that?

3. Put on Some Music
Place a radio or television in your dog’s room and turn the volume to a level that will help drown out the unfamiliar noise. Put on something soothing that won’t startle your pup and trigger their noise anxiety.

Pro tip - if you’re struggling to find the right music, YouTube has tons of relaxing playlists specifically created to help keep your dog relaxed.

4. Inform Any Guests
If you’re planning on having a spooky Halloween party, make sure your guests know where your pets are and to leave them be. Your guests may be excited to see your pup, but this probably isn’t the best time to introduce your dog to new people. This way your dog won’t be overwhelmed by new people and feel like they are encroaching on their territory.

5. Consider the Use of Calming Aids
For dogs who get stressed from the Halloween noises and disruptions, there are some natural anti-anxiety options available including Adaptil collars, sprays and diffusers.

These contain naturally calming pheromones which are also clinically proven to calm and comfort dogs in challenging situations like staying home alone, loud noises, visitors and other fears.

Shop our range of products that can help reduce the stress for pets:

6. Ask Your Vet About Medication
If your pet is very anxious, they may need a little more help. Chat to your local Animates Vetcare team for recommendations and training tips. Our vets can recommend appropriate medications your dog can take to reduce anxiety.

Halloween pet safety tips to remember

Keep candy away from pets: Keep your spooky treats well out of reach to avoid your pet consuming anything toxic. Chocolate in all forms—especially dark or baking chocolate—is toxic for cats and dogs, and sugar-free candies containing the sugar substitute xylitol can cause serious health problems in pets. If you suspect your pet has ingested anything toxic, please call your vet immediately.

Be cautious with costumes: Some pets enjoy wearing clothing, while others feel stressed out by it. If you’re sure your furry friend is up for it, make sure the garments are appropriate to the animal, their movements aren’t restricted, and materials are flame resistant and free from irritants. Check the costume carefully for small, dangling or easily chewed-off pieces that could present a choking hazard.

Keep decorations out of reach: Seasonal décor can spruce up your home, but it can also lead to potential pet hazards. To keep your pets safe, make sure they can’t get their paws on your festive decorations.

Keep your pet ID’d: Check your pet’s microchip, collar and ID tag details are up to date. Ensuring your pet’s details are up to date will help them get home if they get scared and run from your property.

Follow these tips and have a safe and happy Halloween!