If you have a black cat, be especially vigilant; black cats are more likely to be abused or even killed during this time of year.
1. Keep your cat indoors.
This is the best way to protect your cat from the dangers of Halloween, including:
- Candy and other Halloween treats, many of which are toxic to cats.
- Costumes, which can be scary and stressful for cats.
- Decorations, such as electrical cords and small objects that could be choking hazards.
- Other animals, such as stray cats and dogs that may be aggressive.
2. Microchip your cat and make sure their ID tags are up to date.
If you must let your cat outside on Halloween, make sure they are wearing a collar with ID tags and that they are supervised at all times.
A microchip is a permanent form of identification (the size of a grain of rice) implanted under the skin. If your cat escapes, having them microchipped and wearing ID tags will make it easier for a veterinarian or animal shelter to identify them, ensuring that they are returned to you as quickly as possible.
3. Carefully consider whether your cat will enjoy wearing a costume.
Cats in costume are so cute! And some of them don’t mind dressing up. But if your kitty hisses, sprints away, or hides when you break out the Halloween costume, that’s a good sign that they’re just not into dressing up.
If you do dress up your cat, make sure the costume is loose and comfortable and does not restrict their movement or breathing. Avoid costumes with small parts that could be a choking hazard.
4. Be aware of the dangers of Halloween decorations.
Electrical cords and other decorations can be choking hazards for cats. Small objects can be swallowed and cause intestinal blockages.
When decorating your home, avoid using decorations made of fragile materials, such as glass or ceramic. Keep all cords and small objects out of reach of your cat.
5. Be mindful of the noise level on Halloween.
Loud noises can be stressful for cats, so try to keep the volume down if you are having a party or if trick-or-treaters are coming to your door.
6. Provide a safe place for your cat to hide.
If you are having a Halloween party or are expecting a lot of trick-or-treaters, set up a private and quiet place for kitty to hide in, such as a room in the back of your home, a closest, under a bed, or their carrier.
You may also want to provide your cat with a hiding place in their regular living area. This could be a cardboard box, a cat tree, or a tunnel.
Provide your cat with fresh food and water and leave them alone so they can relax and de-stress.
7. Don’t bring your cat to a party.
If you are going to a Halloween party, leave your cat at home with a friend or family member. This will help reduce the stress and anxiety they may experience.
If you must take your cat to a party, make sure they are in a carrier or on a leash at all times. This will help keep them safe from other animals and from getting lost.
8. Keep candy and other Halloween treats out of reach.
Many Halloween treats, such as chocolate and macadamia nuts, are toxic to cats and can cause vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and even death. Keep all candy and treats in a sealed container or in a high place where your cat cannot reach them.
If you are having a Halloween party, ask your guests to keep their candy bowls out of reach of pets. You may also want to provide pet-safe treats for your guests to give to your cat.
9. Keep your cat away from pumpkin-carving activities.
If you are carving a pumpkin, keep the pumpkin seeds and pumpkin flesh out of reach of your cat. Pumpkin seeds can be a choking hazard and pumpkin flesh can cause stomach upset.
10. Be careful with open flames.
Candles, jack-o’-lanterns, and other open flames can be a fire hazard and can also cause burns to cats. Keep all open flames out of reach of your curious kitty.
Consider using battery-operated candles instead of real candles. They have realistic-looking flames, are just as festive, and are much safer for pets, small children, and tipsy party-goers.
11. Keep your cat’s vaccinations up to date.
If your cat is not vaccinated, they are at risk of contracting diseases from other animals. It’s important to keep your cat’s vaccinations up to date, especially if you let them outside on Halloween.
12. If you see a stray cat on Halloween, try to help it find a safe place to stay.
You can contact your local animal shelter or rescue organization for assistance.
13. Help keep community cats safe.
If you live in an area with a community cat population, avoid leaving food out for community cats on Halloween. This could attract unwanted attention from trick-or-treaters or pranksters.
If you see a community cat that appears to be lost or injured, please contact a local animal shelter or rescue organization.
14. Talk to your neighbors.
Talk to your neighbors about the importance of keeping cats safe on Halloween. Ask them to be careful when driving home from trick-or-treating, and to keep an eye out for lost or injured cats.
You may also want to organize a neighborhood watch group to help keep cats and other pets safe on Halloween.
With a little planning and care, you can help your cat have a safe and enjoyable Halloween.