Staff Report

Halloween can be the spookiest night of the year, but keeping your pets safe doesn’t have to be tricky. Santa Barbara County Animal Services wants to help you have a Happy Halloween by reminding you about the Halloween dangers for pets. SBC Animal Services suggests that pet owners take the following steps to ensure their pet’s safety.

1. Keep pets safe inside your house or garage. This will ensure that pets won’t become frightened or feel threatened by costume clad children or adults.

2. Be sure all pets are wearing collars with ID tags. Check to make sure microchip information is up to date. Frequently opened doors can provide a perfect opportunity for escape. A license tag is your pet’s ticket home!

3. Keep candy out of your pet’s reach. Candy can be harmful and in some cases fatal to pets. Chocolate is toxic to both cats and dogs. Sugar free candies containing the sugar substitute xylitol can cause serious problems in pets. Candy wrappers may have tasty leftovers on them and if ingested can cause serious injury to your pet’s digestive system.

4. Use Halloween decorations with caution. Make sure that pets cannot become entangled in cords or other hanging decorations. While a carved jack-o-lantern is festive, pets can easily knock over a lit pumpkin and start a fire. The flame from a jack-o-lantern or candles can singe, burn, or set fire to your pet’s fur. It is recommended that you use artificial flames to decorate your home.

5. Leave Fido at home. Dogs may become difficult to handle during the noise and confusion of the Halloween festivities. A dog may run away or bite out of fear which will quickly end the Halloween fun for all.
Santa Barbara County Animal Services wishes you a safe and happy Halloween and reminds you state law requires all dogs over four months of age to be licensed. Should your pet get lost this Halloween be sure to stop by your local animal shelter in Santa Maria, Lompoc, or Santa Barbara so we can help them get back home.