Halloween Treats Can Play Tricks on Your Dog’s Health

The staff of Beverly's Precious Pet Campus wishes you and your precious pet a happy and safe Halloween.

Halloween is just around the corner, one of the favorite holidays for kids and anyone that enjoys a good scare. Halloween can also be scary for your pets, but not in a good way. With the doorbell ringing all night and strangers showing up in weird outfits, Halloween can be a disturbing experience for your dog.

Additionally, with all the candy that trick-or-treaters bring home, there’s a real chance that your pet might ingest something that could endanger its health, as both certain types of candy, and their discarded wrappers, can make a dog ill.

To protect your pet, you should pay close attention to your children as they enjoy their booty to make sure that Fido doesn’t eat something he shouldn’t.

Chocolate, in any of its many forms, is one of the favorite Halloween treats to both give out and receive. But, as most dog owners know, CHOCOLATE IS POISON TO DOGS; it is toxic to them because of its two main ingredients, theobromine and caffeine.

While not as dangerous as chocolate, you should also watch closely for any signs of gastrointestinal problems if your dog eats non-chocolate candies. Call your vet if any of the symptoms listed below appear.

Another major threat to your pet’s health is the wrappers the candy comes in. These foreign objects can cause intestinal blocks and obstruct your pet’s intestines, and may require surgery to remove the internal blockages.

If your pet exhibits any of these signs and you think they may have ingested candy or foreign objects, you should contact your vet as soon as possible.

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Rapid breathing
  • Seizures
  • Lethargy
  • Loss of appetite

The best way to prevent your dog from becoming ill is to make sure your kids are aware of the hazard candy poses to your pets. You should:

  • Help your children find a hiding place for their goodies that the dog can’t get to with either its mouth or paws.
  • Remember, clever dogs will do anything to get their paws on a tasty treat, including opening drawers and cabinets.

If you host a Halloween party at your home, make sure that any candy being served is safely away from your pet’s reach, even if you plan to be in the room with them. Temptation is a powerful force for man or beast, and it only takes a second for a dog to take a bite from the candy bowl.

You can have a happy and safe Halloween for you, your family, and your precious pets by following these few simple tips!

Will Indiana Make Unrestrained Dogs in Cars Illegal (and Expensive) Like in New Jersey?

Last week, New Jersey took a big step forward to protect drivers and pets on the road by enacting a law so that police officers can ticket any driver improperly transporting an animal, with fines ranging from $250 to $1,000 for each offense. (Fines can multiply for more than one animal in the vehicle.)

Additionally, drivers can be charged with a disorderly person’s offense under the state’s animal cruelty statutes.

Superintendent of the NJ Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (NJSPCA) Col. Frank Rizzo delivered the important safety message at a press conference held at a local park dog run last week. The timing of the announcement, right at the unofficial start of summer, was because more people take to the roads during the warmer months and often times take their family pet with them.

According to Col. Rizzo, the NJSPCA would like to see all animals restrained from moving around freely in a car, or at least harnessed or leashed using one of the many safety products currently available. “Some people tell us they like to let their pets hang their heads out the window to take in the fresh air,” Col. Rizzo said, “but dogs and cats become projectiles in a crash. You wouldn’t put your child in the car unrestrained so you shouldn’t put your pet in the car unrestrained either.”

NJ Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) Chairman and Chief Administrator Raymond P. Martinez noted that more than 5,400 Americans die each year in car accidents caused by distracted driving. He cited a 2010 survey by AAA that found that driving with a dog on your lap is far more common and distracting than first thought. According to the survey:

  • 20% of those asked admitted to letting their dog sit on their lap while they drove.
  • 31% said they were truly distracted by their dog while driving no matter where the dog was in the car.

Reactions ranged from not particularly enthusiastic to downright incredulous. Comments from New Jersey dog owners that attended the press conference, including police officers tasked with enforcing the law and issuing summonses, as reported in an article from the Verona (NJ) Cedar Grove Patch, included:

  • “Seriously? The best part of my day is hitting the road with my dog sitting right beside me in my truck," was the initial reaction from one veteran police officer.
  • Another thought that this was a particularly intrusive law, especially given the severe penalties.
  • The owner of Daisy, a Great Dane, said he thought this was just a back door way for the state to make money. “Really,” he said “$250 to $1000? Why not just say you have to add dogs onto your car insurance policy? Oh wait… The state wouldn’t get that money.”
  • The owner of Millie, a Jack Russell Terrier said, “Great, so now when I restrain her she’ll bark non-stop in the car and I’ll get into an accident.”

Other states have similar legislation pending that will make restraining pets in motor vehicles mandatory. Will Indiana follow suit? Should it? We’d like your opinion, whether you support or oppose the idea. Leave your comments below and let our state legislators know where you stand on the issue.

northwestohio.com: Seat-belt your dog or face $1000 fine
Verona (NJ) Cedar Grove Patch: Unbuckled Dogs Draw Stiffer Penalty Than People
NJ Officials Urge Motorists To Buckle Up Furry Ones