Well it’s the time of the year again. For fido with those nonstop doorbell rings we call it…Bark-o-ween. As much as we may enjoy this holiday, Halloween can be confusing and scary for our four legged friends. Here are some more safety tips and things to consider to ensure a successful Halloween with your dog:

1. Ding Dong – CANDY PLEASE! If your dog is nervous and reacts to the sound of a door bell, this can be a good time to practice and train fido if you have someone helping you. Have one person pass out the candy and you can practice obedience with your dog. If you are just starting out, you can keep your dog on a leash for this training exercise. Every time the door bell rings and your dog acts appropriately (perhaps a bark and then quickly calms down), he gets his own doggy approved treat. Start out several feet away from the door. By the end of the night, he might not even care who is ringing your door bell because he is already ready for that treat! This is an excellent desensitization exercise if done properly. If you know this simply won’t work perhaps consider boarding or leaving your pup with a loved one.

2. Boo-Hiss-Woo! Scary sights and sounds. The door training may be too much for your dog and he may feel more comfortable in his own safe space. It is perfectly ok if your dog would rather be in another area happily chewing on a treat/bone instead. Please observe your dog’s comfort level here and crate, or move him if necessary.

Children who are loud and excited in costume may scare your dog. Gauge how your dog responds and act accordingly. If your dog is showing signs of stress, remove him from that situation. If your dog is already nervous around children, this would NOT be a good time to try and socialize him around kids. The last thing you need is your dog scaring your unfriendly neighbor’s child. On the other hand this might be a great time to make new friends and even potential play pals for your pup.

3. Hot Dog! Costumes for Dogs. If you are dressing up your dog for Halloween, please make sure your dog can still properly see, hear and move comfortably. Other dogs may react poorly when they see dogs in costume. This isn’t out of the norm, so just be aware and observant. And please dress creatively or ironically.

4. Not a treat! Chocolate and other goodies. After the kids bring home their stash, it is very common for dogs to find their way into the candy. Encourage your kids to keep all candy away and properly stored, so your dog cannot access it. Here are some treats that your pup can have.

Have a safe Halloween from your friends at Best Bully Sticks! Woof Woof!

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