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ruff night ahead

Dogs Trust urges owners to watch out for their dog's safety and welfare on Halloween night

The charity said 31 October can be ‘the worst night of the year’ for canine companions.

DOGS TRUST IRELAND has urged dog owners to pay close attention to their pet’s safety and welfare this Halloween – which the charity said “can be the worst night of the year for many dogs.”

Dog owners are advised to keep their dog indoors tonight, supervising them on toilet breaks, as the sound of fireworks can be very distressing for them.

Dogs Trust also appealed to owners not to take their dogs trick or treating, as people in costumes can be overwhelming for them, and they may run off if fireworks are going off nearby.

Vonna Nolan, Head Dog School Coach at Dogs Trust Ireland said: “The best way we can help our dogs through Halloween is to keep them indoors and ensure homes are as calm as possible. Closing the curtains, turning up soothing music like reggae to drown out outside noise, and giving them a safe place to hide will help dogs cope.

“Some dogs will seek comfort, while others may prefer to take themselves off to a quiet space so it’s important to let our dogs take the lead on how they want to be comforted.”

Halloween can also be a prime time for dogs to go missing, the charity added. Owners should check their dog’s microchip details are correct, and that they have an ID tag and collar so they can quickly be returned home.

Owners are also advised to ensure there is a closed door between the front door and the dog, to prevent pets escaping when trick or treaters arrive.

Niamh Curran-Kelly, Veterinary and Welfare Manager at Dogs Trust Ireland continued: “Preparation can help prevent disaster, and in the case of caring for our dogs, there is a lot we can do today to help them over the next 24 hours. If you are making up goody bags for trick-or-treaters, please make sure to store them up high and out of reach from your dog. Lots of Halloween sweets are poisonous to dogs, especially anything containing chocolate, raisins, grapes, and xylitol.

“However, accidents can happen, so if you do suspect your dog has eaten something they shouldn’t have, please contact your vet immediately as the sooner treatment can begin, the better your dog’s chances of recovery are. Make sure to store your vet’s out of hours emergency number on your phone in case you need it later.”

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