Oct 15, 2019 | By, For Pet's Sake

Things to do with your pet on Halloween

Halloween can be a time to get scared and overload on sugary treats, but it can also give pet owners a perfect excuse to spend time with their animals.

Next time Oct. 31 rolls around on the calendar, set aside some time to do these fun things with your furry friends.

Dress them up in a costume: Many pet stores, local and online, carry plenty of costume options for pets. This is the perfect time to dress them up as your favorite movie character or something that reminds you of your pet. It also lends itself to photo sessions that will give you memories to keep much longer than Halloween night. Just make sure your pet isn’t allergic to any of the fabrics, ensure the costume is the right size, and look out for loose parts that could fall off or be chewed on and become a choking hazard.

Instead of trick-or-treat…Trick-AND-treat: Dogs are very motivated by positive reinforcement, so next time you give yourself a bite of a candy bar, open up their bag of treats and give them something too. This can be a time to practice old tricks or teach them new ones, and your pet will appreciate the time spent with you as well as the reward for doing something you ask them to do. Cats enjoy treats too, so even if they aren’t interested in doing tricks, they will still love an extra snack or two.

Have a dog-friendly party with friends: This idea might be difficult for people who have small apartments. However, if you have a yard or a large common area where pets can hang out, throwing a Halloween party with all of your fellow dog owners can be fun for everyone. It socializes the dogs and lets them play together, and it allows you to spend time with your friends and watch the cuteness in front of you.

Autumn hike in the leaves: All the treats your dog might get on Halloween need to be burned off somehow. Keeping dogs at a healthy weight is important for their long-term well-being, so taking them for regular walks is always important. On Halloween, you can go to the park and find a pile of leaves for them to play in, or you can take a scenic walk near a forested area if it’s near your home.

Visit a local pumpkin patch: While pumpkin patches aren’t a fool-proof option for dogs, it can still be fun if your dog enjoys people and nature. Some farms where pumpkin patches are offered during Halloween time may not allow dogs for a variety of reasons, including potential pet waste and behavioral issues. If you do find a pumpkin patch that allows dogs, the corn mazes there can give your pet a fun puzzle to try to solve. It’s also another great picture opportunity.

Use your cat as a part of your trick-or-treating display at your home: Black cats are a staple of Halloween decorations, so if you have one of those, they could fit perfectly into the evening festivities of the holiday. Put them in their costume and have them greet trick-or-treaters at the door, or possibly place them in the window and blend them in with the decorations.

These are just a few ideas for having a fun Halloween with your pet. Plus, pets respond well to traditions and habits, so if you find an activity that you and your pet love, you’ll have that idea for many Halloweens to come.

Have a question about pet health? Want to become the best possible pet parent? Find helpful tips, reminders, and insight to giving your furry friend the best possible care with For Pet’s Sake! Learn more at drdevonsmith.com.