Halloween. All Hallow’s Eve. It’s a holiday that synonymous with fun – and frights. While Halloween is fun for us humans who know that the tricks will always come with treats, for our furry family members, Halloween can seem all too real. With an often-overwhelming amount of strange people, smells, and costumes that turn people into monsters, Halloween can be a pretty spooky time for cats.
We aren’t aiming to cause paranoia, but we do think it’s wise for pet owners to know the potential dangers that holidays like Halloween can present for our favorite felines, especially those that might not seem obvious at first. Keep these “hidden dangers” in mind when it comes to Halloween so everyone can have a Happy Halloween!
- Indoors - If you have indoor/outdoor cats or wholly outdoor cats, please keep your cats inside until the following day. Even when the parties and trick-or-treaters are done there still might be some danger to your cats. Many communities celebrate Halloween before and sometimes after October 31. Unfortunately, some humans might harm, steal or worse, kill a cat.
- IDs and Microchips - In the event your cat does get outside, please make sure they have IDs and are microchipped. This can greatly increase the chance that they will be found and returned to you. If they don’t have identification some people feel they don’t belong to anyone and can do what they like with them (keep them or worse).
- Lots of Strangers – If you have a lot of trick-or-treaters coming to your door or might be having a party, this can pose a lot of potential problems for your cats. Many cats don’t like loud noises or strangers and this might cause them to try to run and hide. In the stress of party planning, it can be hard to remember our feline friends might not be as excited as we are for a party!
Here are some ways to make your cat more comfortable, come partygoers or trick-or-treaters!
- Keep pets confined and away from doors during Halloween.
- Create a safe room with all of their toys, food, litter box and some familiar nesting areas.
- Play soothing music
- Try CBD oil, Feliway calming spray and pheromones or other natural solutions that might relieve stress.
- Thunder shirts can help some cats deal with loud noises and crowds.
- And make sure there is a sign on the door telling guests that this room is off limits and explain why the room is off limits. Make sure children understand this as well.
- Playtime - Exercise your cats before the festivities began to relieve some stress.
- Plants - Halloween plants such as pumpkins and corn can be dangerous to your cats. Make sure these are out of their reach.
- Dangerous Treats - Halloween Candy poses multiple dangers to your cats. Some ingredients are poison to cats, and the wrappers, papers and plastic parts can be a choking hazard.
- Halloween Accessories – There are a number of items associated with Halloween that might pose a danger to your cats:
- Candles can be very interesting and dangerous for cats.
- Decorations can be choking items for cats that like to chew plastic and other substances.
- Most cats don’t seem to like costumes and they might injure themselves trying to escape it. Please don’t leave them alone if they are wearing one.
- Glow sticks can be another potential chewing item.
- Electric and battery powered decorations. If your cat like to chew on electric cords, new items in the house might draw their attention to it.
- Community Cats - Don’t forget to watch out for cats in your community that don’t make it inside before the trick or treaters. They deserve to be safe as well.