5 Tips To Prevent Dog Bites On Halloween
Halloween is fast approaching. It’s a day that is great fun for children in costumes who are going door-to-door with the cries of “Trick or Treat!” They’re always hoping for the treat, of course, usually in the form of a candy bar!
Halloween, though can be a scary time for your dog and a scared dog is one who is more prone to biting — not because that’s his nature, but because of his fear.
5 Tips To Prevent Dog Bites On Halloween
These tips are ideal year-round, but have a specific Halloween theme because it is the day when your doorbell will be rung more successive times (probably) than on any other day of the year.
Keep your dog away from the door. You may love seeing the princesses, pirates, super heroes and cuddly-looking costumes, but to your dog these tiny shrieking, happy humans in odd costumes can induce fear. When you open the door to hand out treats keep your dog away from the door. Whether that means you need to put him in a separate room or have someone hold onto him on a leash, we urge you to do that. Don’t let your Halloween be marred because your dog bit a tiny trick-or-treater.
Lost dog! If your dog slips out the door while you’re handing out candy it could be a disaster! Your dogs are already spooked with the noise and the children and the unusual activity. If they dash out into the night, they are already spooked (pun intended!) and will come in contact with a lot of strangers. Your dog is already in a high stress situation and being lost and frantic could send even the nicest of dogs into an “Oh my gosh I need to defend myself” state and that state could lead to your dog biting someone.
Keep your dog away from the trick-or-treaters. Whether the costumed kids are your own family members or are the children of neighbors, many trick-or-treaters are face-level with your dog and this, coupled with the costume itself could lead your dog to become aggressive. A child in a costume who is laughing and jumping around could induce fear or panic into your dog. She may think she’s protecting you by lashing out at the child. Don’t put your dog in a position where her fear will lead to a bite.
Don’t dress your dog unless you know he likes it. Many dogs do not like being dressed, but many pet parents insist on dressing them — that’s a bite accident waiting to happen. You’re setting your dog up for failure and yourself for a potential bite if you’re struggling to get your dog into a costume. Many dogs, if you start dressing them when they’re young will tolerate clothing. If your dog has never liked it, putting him into a costume on a day that is already frenetic could lead to him biting you when you’re dressing him.
Walk your dog before the festivities start. Do what you can to walk your dog before nightfall and before the little trick-or-treaters come a-knocking. If you know your dog is uncomfortable with the sights and sounds of Halloween, it’s best to walk him before the children come around and before nightfall. Take him out again after the trick-or-treaters have gone home for the night. Even the most well-trained dog could bolt when confronted with ghosts, ghouls and goblins when on a walk in the near-dark.
Halloween treats could be lethal for your dogs. Candy bars and other Halloween treats might be fun for the children and the adults but could be lethal for your dog. Keep all candy away from your dog so he isn’t ingesting chocolate or the packaging the candy comes in. Also, if you have carved pumpkins on your porch steps light them with LED candles rather than burning candles. This will help prevent a child’s costume from catching fire and will prevent a curious dog from sticking his nose into the pumpkin and getting burned.
Halloween can be great fun, but if your dog is nervous, please keep him in a room away from the door and keep him calm to prevent any dog bites this year.
About FIDO There are many reasons a dog may bite, and it’s not always 100% preventable. In addition to financially protecting dog owners from dog bite claims, our Canine Liability Policy also covers other injuries to people, including scratches and fall injuries caused by dogs and injuries to other animals. Please contact us today for more information at (407) 865-7477, ext. 101.