Advance Planning Keeps Cats Safe for Halloween

Candy, decorations and frequent visitors can pose a threat to cats.

Posted: October 19 2007 5 a.m. EDT

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Advance Planning Keeps Cats Safe for Halloween
Take proper precautions to protect your cat from Halloween hazards.
As Halloween approaches, so do holiday safety hazards for cats. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) offers a few tips to ensure a safe Halloween amid full bowls of sweets and trick-or-treaters at the front door coming to collect.

Pet owners should keep tabs on their cats’ whereabouts, as visits from trick-or-treaters leave ample opportunities for pets to escape. Cats should wear identification tags in case they accidentally get out, particularly as interest in black cats is piqued around Halloween. 

“We haven’t seen any evidence that indicates black cats are at a greater risk during Halloween,” said Gail Buchwald, senior vice president of the ASPCA Pet Adoption Center in Manhattan. “Some adoption facilities restrict the adoption of black cats to prevent any misbehavior, but the ASPCA hasn’t found sufficient proof to implement this. However, it’s always a good idea to keep an eye on pets during this busy holiday.”

Shiny wrappers and sweet smells can attract cats to candy, but accidental ingestion can be hazardous to their health. Pet owners should be on the lookout for symptoms of ingestion such as vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, hyperactivity and increased thirst, according to the ASPCA.

In addition, aluminum foil and cellophane candy wrappers are a danger as they may cause intestinal blockage and induce vomiting. Halloween accessories — such as pumpkins and decorative corn — may upset stomachs if ingested.

“It’s extremely important to ensure that Halloween treats are out of reach of your pet," said Dr. Stephen Hansen, senior vice president of the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center. “Animals are very good at sniffing out the treats they shouldn’t have, so it’s up to us to make sure they stay happy and healthy.”

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Reader Comments

debby    oxford, NC

10/19/2007 9:11:01 PM

4th of july and halloween is when i make sure my cats are in for people can be so mean!

Angela    Hamburg, NY

10/19/2007 8:03:47 PM

Very helpful! At least my kitty runs the other way when the door is open, so I hope he won't escape!

Nikki    Chicago, IL

10/19/2007 8:44:39 AM

All terrific suggestions ;-}

Donna    Limington, ME

10/19/2007 6:36:05 AM

Very good point about the foil wrappers!

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