Halloween is a joyful and festive time for everyone – with tasty treats, fun parties, and playful costumes, who doesn’t love the spooky holiday? Pets, I’m looking at you. To our canines and felines, Halloween can be incredibly stressful, especially for our already timid or fearful furry friends. For a dog or cat that already grows anxious when someone unrecognizable comes to the front door, imagine how unpleasant a full night of trick or treating visitors can be! Thankfully, this doesn’t mean you have to put away the candy. Here are a few surefire tips we rely on for this tricky holiday (pun intended)…

–For starters, ensure that you won’t spend a night at the vet with a sick dog by keeping Halloween candy far out of reach. Even thoroughly wrapped, dogs can smell and locate a bag of Snickers, so we recommend stashing treats above the fridge or in a securely closed drawer.

–Consider skipping the pet costume altogether, especially if your kitty or pup looks uncomfortable, disoriented, or nervous while wearing it. If, however, you must dress up Fido, opt for something that can easily tie around his neck and won’t block his vision.

–Having a Halloween party or expecting lots of trick or treaters? Although we love to have our pets included (and they can sometimes be the life of the party!), our four legged friends are often happiest away from the commotion. Put him or her in another room with a bowl of water, a few treats, and a comfy blanket.

–Take care to keep any hanging lights or lit pumpkins out of harms way. A cat may try to play with string decorations, or a dog may be intrigued by a flickering pumpkin, and the last thing anyone wants on Halloween night is an accidental house fire.

Do you include your pets for Halloween festivities? Or do you prefer to tuck them in for the night? Please feel free to discuss in the comments!