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Halloween Pet Safety

We’re coming up on Halloween and this hauntingly, spooktacular holiday provides a frightfully fun time for all. However, it can be a dangerous time for our four-legged friends as many types of treats, candy, chocolate and other goodies can be quite poisonous to them. In fact, during the week of Halloween, calls to the veterinarians at the national Pet Poison Helpline increase by 12 percent, making it the call center’s busiest time of year.

I’m Chris Parks with North Star Services, LLC and I’ll be reviewing tips to keep our pets safe this holiday season as well as a list of foods for them to avoid.


Our pets look cute dressed in costumes, but they might not enjoy it as much as their owners. If you dress your pet in a costume, be sure it doesn’t impair his/her vision, movement or air intake. If the costume contains metallic beads, snaps or other small pieces, be aware that if ingested, some metals (especially zinc and lead) can result in serious poisoning. Also, don’t be tempted to dye or apply coloring to your pet’s fur. Even if the dye is labeled non-toxic to humans, it could still be harmful to pets.

Glow Sticks and Jewelry

Pets love to chew on these items. While not usually life-threatening, their contents can cause pain and irritation in the mouth, as well as profuse drooling and foaming at the mouth.

Foods to Avoid

The following is a list of foods, candies and treats our pets (especially dogs) should not eat:

Chocolate and chocolate-flavored foods are toxic to dogs. From cupcakes to candy bars, both milk chocolate and dark chocolate can be harmful to dogs even in small doses.

Keep your dog away from raisins and grapes. Fresh and dried grapes are poisonous to dogs and can wreak havoc on their kidneys.

Candy corn and other high-sugar foods can harm dogs. Consuming sugar-laden foods can put your pet's systems in distress and may cause pancreatitis, a dangerous condition that can be fatal.

Avoid giving your dog sugar-free gum, mints and candy. Though harmless to humans, the artificial sweetener xylitol, common in products marketed as "sugar-free," can cause health problems in canines even in tiny amounts.

Candy wrappers can cause obstructions in dogs. Packaging made of paper, foil and plastic can cause obstructions that may require X-rays and surgical removal.

Tricks for Keeping Dangerous Foods From Your Pets

  • If you have children who will be sorting through their Halloween candy haul, keep pets in a separate area before dumping out buckets and bags

  • After opening candy, put wrappers in the trash immediately.

  • Have a plan for where you'll store the goodies after trick-or-treating is over

  • Avoid putting bags or baskets of candy on the floor, on tables or on other surfaces where your dog can reach

  • Review the list of toxic foods for dogs and these Halloween safety tips for pets with everyone in your household

What to Do If Your Dog or Pet Eats Chocolate or Other Toxic Food

Signs of poisoning in dogs can include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, loss of coordination, excessive thirst, rapid heartbeat and seizures. Even if you don’t notice signs of distress but think your dog might have ingested something potentially harmful, it’s a good idea to call animal poison control and to contact your veterinarian or your local emergency veterinarian after hours.

Play It Safe

During this Halloween season, keep your pet safe. If you think your pet has ingested something poisonous, the veterinarians at Pet Poison Helpline suggest that you get help sooner than later. It’s always easier, less expensive, and safer for your pet to be treated earlier, versus when he’s showing severe symptoms. Contact your veterinarian or Pet Poison Helpline immediately at 855-764-7661.

Request A Free Inspection Today

We love our pets as much as any animal lover. We also love to help our customers. Although you may plan for the worst, when fire, water or wind damage occurs to your residential or commercial property, contact North Star Services, LLC — a certified IICRC restoration and remediation company with over 20 years’ experience in Nashville, Berry Hill & Middle Tennessee. We provide free mold, crawl space and restoration inspections, and are available 24/7, 365 days a year for emergencies such as water damage, fire damage, flood and storm damage and more. Contact us at 629-221-0638 or request a free estimate now.

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