“Halloween is only a few days away, and I am exhausted from all the hustle and bustle in the house with all the scary stuff and strange, sweet smells. Why do I have to wear this silly thing?”. Poncho the Pug
Is this your puppy’s first halloween? Halloween is an exciting time for little trick or treaters. Adorable costumes, never-ending treats, haunted houses, tired parents shivering while they wait for their kids to knock on every house on the block. Or in this day and age, waiting in their warm vehicle.
Depending on your puppy’s personality, it can be an exciting time for them as well, but sometimes it can also be a little scary.
If you are going to be home handing out candy, there will be quite a bit of extraordinary senses to be taken in by your puppy by way of sound, smell, and visuals. It can all be so overwhelming. However, there are ways you can make his or her first halloween experience a smooth, easy one.
The Following are 5 Tips on Puppy Proofing Halloween:
1. CANDY – Keep candy out of reach. Your pups sense of smell is greater than yours and it can get them in trouble sometimes. They like to explore with their nose and taste with their mouth. ALL candy is bad for your dog! Do NOT give your canine any candy, dessert, chips etc. Make sure you keep the candy high enough, or sealed away. Last thing you need is a trip to the vet because Curious Collie ate the whole treat bowl! Enough amounts of chocolate is toxic and fatal. Xylitol is an artificial sweetener which is in virtually every candy among other things, and it is very toxic and dangerous. I will write more about toxic foods coming up in future posts so stay tuned.
2. NOISE – “Trick or Treat!!!”. For a nervous pup, reduce noise by putting your pup in a different room or area of the house, away from the front entrance. Though it is good to expose them to all sorts of noise when they are young, it should be done slowly and not all at once.
3. DECORATIONS – Like all young newborns, puppies are born with the ‘curious‘ itch and will get into everything and anything if you don’t keep an eye on them. They like to explore with their teeth! So make sure you do not have anything lying around that you do not want to part with. Keep an eye out for little pup chewing on any decor that is toxic.
4. KIDS – Though it is good to socialize your puppy and have them get used to children, halloween may not be the best time to do that if you have a timid pup already. Children yelling trick or treat and the bright coloured costumes can be intimidating to an already nervous pup who will need to warm up slowly. They will feel safer in their crate if you are crate training them. Or you can have them just lay down on their bed in a room. If you have a confident puppy, then you can supervise their interaction with the children who come to the door.
5. BackyarD – For puppies, you probably want to keep them in the house for training purposes as well as safety. If you do keep them outside, check up on them regularly. As sad as it is that I have to say this, there are some people who like to play sick pranks, such as poisoning your dog by throwing a poisoned piece of food over the fence. Yup, it happens. Also, kids who may not know better may throw candy over as well, thinking it is okay.
Okay! so you’re ready! Keeping these few tips in mind, your pup will grow up to love October 31st….Well…until you start dressing it up in costumes. Just remember, ‘curious’ Collie’s first puppy halloween night does not have to be a nightmare on her street.