Tips for Dog Owners

It’s important to remember that even if your dog is generally friendly to all people, they may not be so used to people dressed up in Halloween costumes which can look scary.

If you know you have a dog likely to be fearful of strangers coming to the door, consider putting a sign up on the front gate asking people not to trick-or-treat.

Some dogs and puppies can get excited by costumes which have parts dangling off them while kids are wearing them. Supervise your kids and dogs and teach your kids to stand still if your dog gets too excited. Redirect your dog to something more interesting such as a toy or put them away in their den or crate.

  • If you have people meeting at your house, secure your dog behind a closed door or in a crate.
  • If your pets are kept outdoors, consider keeping them inside or in a ‘den’ on Halloween night.
  • Give your dog a chew or stuffed Kong.
  • You can play music or leave the TV on to mask sounds of activity at the front door.
  • Close curtains and blinds so your dog doesn’t see people coming to and from the front door.
  • If you have a dog that reacts to the sound of the doorbell or knocking on the door, disconnect the doorbell or watch out for trick-or-treaters so they don’t have to knock.

Sweets & Chocolate

Please don't feed your pet sweets and chocolate and keep your treats out of reach. Chocolate contains a toxic ingredient called Theobromine. This can cause symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhoea, increased heart rate and seizures. Some sweets and candy contain and artificial sweetener called Xylitol can cause symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhoea and sometimes seizures.

Tips for Trick or Treaters

  • Avoid houses if you can hear a dog barking behind a fence or door.
  • Never approach any dog, even if you know them! They may not recognise you in a costume.
  • If an owner opens a door and there is a dog there, just stay still and wait for the owner to put the dog away. Don’t move towards the person or dog, wait for them to come to you to give you treats. Wait for them to close the door
  • before you turn and leave.
  • If a dog escapes and approaches you, stand still, hands folded in front of you and watch your feet. Wait for someone to come and get the dog before you turn away.
  • It is best to ignore other people’s dogs on Halloween if you meet them out walking. The dog may be worried about all the people in strange costumes and may not recognise you in a costume.