It’s that time of year again when families are carving pumpkins, going apple picking and planning their next Halloween costumes. With so many fall festivities occurring, it’s easy to convince the whole family to get involved in the excitement. If you’ve got pets in the house, why shouldn’t they be invited, too? Seeing dog owners dressing their pup up in a creative Halloween costume is a common sight. Depending on your dog’s temperament, taking them out when the kids go trick-or-treating for candy can increase the fun for the whole family. If you’re considering taking your dog trick or treating this year, review these safety tips for a successful Halloween night.
Tips to Safely Take Your Dog Trick or Treating
1. Load up on Dog Treats
Preparing to take your dog trick or treating is a lot like bringing along an extra kid. Venturing through the whole neighborhood is a big task, and what better way to keep your dog walking than persuading it with treats? Dogs can’t have chocolate, but treats are basically dog candy that can be used to reward good behavior. It also wouldn’t hurt to pack water and your pup’s favorite toy to be extra prepared.
2. Decorate Your Dog’s Costume
By this, we don’t just mean make sure your dog has better costume accessories than the other dogs. Reflective gear, such as a vest or collar tags, is a great way to keep your dog safe in the dark. Your dog might get overly excited from being greeted by other trick-or-treaters, hearing strange noises or simply being on a walk. It is also important that you know how to calm an overexcited dog. If it strays too far or somehow gets unhooked from the leash, the reflective gear will help you easily identify them. In the worst-case scenario, this can prevent your dog from being hit by a car. Halloween is about having a fun time, but it’s also important to stay safe.
3. Have an Escape Plan
Your dog may enjoy trick-or-treating and the attention it’s receiving from all the humans walking around. Dogs also have a short attention span and can easily get scared by loud noises or strangers, especially outside of their territory. Even if you’re only halfway through your planned trick-or-treating night, pay close attention to leash-tugging or other indicators that your dog is ready to head home.
Dog-friendly treats may be enough to persuade your pup to walk a little further, but you’ll want to have a backup plan, like a family member who’s willing to bring the dog home if it gets tired or overwhelmed by all the trick-or-treaters.
4. Be Prepared for Bathroom Breaks
We can never predict when nature will come calling, and neither can our pets. Your dog’s costume doesn’t inhibit their ability to relieve themselves. Too much material in all the wrong places could “soil” a good time. Your dog is going to stop for bathroom breaks, and this could be a frequent occurrence if your pup is on a mission to mark its territory on every street corner. This could potentially slow down your kid’s Halloween candy quest, so have one person who’s in charge of stopping with the dog. In case of emergencies, you’ll also want to add poop bags on your list of supplies to pack.
5. Track Your Dog’s Mood
Dogs love attention, but if your pup starts to get hungry or tired, keep an eye on it, especially with children around. Your dog may be the friendliest in the world, but it has limits just like the rest of us. If your pet starts to seem unhappy and even a treat doesn’t cheer it up, its night may be over.
Be aware of other pets that are out with their families, too, so you can monitor your dog’s interactions. If your pet doesn’t get along with others, you may want to rethink taking it out. If your dog starts to seem annoyed by other animals, even if it usually loves socializing, keeping it close to your side can prevent any catastrophes.
Enjoy Halloween Night With the Proper Training
Every pet lover wants their dog by their side during family excursions. Whether you’ve got a new puppy or an adult dog, ensuring your pet has proper training for obedience or behavior modification is the first step to a fun night out. With 40 locations across the United States and Canada, The Dog Wizard is here to help.
Contact us today by calling (877) 585-9727 to find a compatible trainer for your dog!