Goblins, Ghouls and Gastrointestinal Distress: How to Prevent Stomach Upset this Halloween

Halloween is a fun time for kids and families. With cute costumes and candy galore, what’s not to love? Unfortunately, the same candy that’s a treat for kids may also perform quite the trick on your pet’s digestive system. Here are some ways to help prevent or minimize digestive distress this Halloween:

Keep the Halloween Candy Away from Your Pets

A vast majority of the candy that is passed out during Halloween contains ingredients that can be toxic to your dog or cat. Candy with chocolate, certain nuts, cinnamon or xylitol (a sweetener used in sugar-free baked goods and gum) can be quite toxic to pets. Signs that your pet might have ingested one of these ingredients include lethargy, vomiting or diarrhea. Candy wrappers can also be eaten or swallowed and become an intestinal obstruction or choking hazard. Keeping the candy far out of your dog or cat’s reach can help prevent digestive disaster. 

Don’t Let Them Get to the Jack-O-Lanterns or Other Decor

Not only do you have to worry about your pet burning themselves, but raw pumpkin or corn isn’t easy on their digestive system. Eating raw pumpkin or corn in small doses isn’t dangerous, just uncomfortable. However, eating large chunks can actually cause intestinal obstruction and can become a medical emergency. For the comfort of your pet, and your stress level as a loving pet parent, it’s easier to keep them inside and away from the traditional Halloween decorations. 

Avoid Intricate Costumes

Kids’ costumes can be an unexpected source of trouble for dogs or cats, so make sure they fit and they don’t have any beads or dangling pieces. Any beads, dangling pieces or costume accessories, like string or hair bands, that are lying around can  easily be eaten by a cat or dog.

Visit Your Vet

If you notice your pet is starting to have stomach issues, call your vet right away. It’s always important to partner with your vet to ensure that your pet gets the best care possible. Your vet will help you determine the severity of the illness and will recommend a treatment plan. 

Don’t make Halloween scarier than it needs to be. Keep an eye on your pets this Halloween and avoid the ghost of gastrointestinal distress.

 
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Sources: 
1. http://www.petmd.com/dog/conditions/digestive/c_multi_chocolate_toxicity
2. http://www.akc.org/content/health/articles/human-foods-dogs-can-and-cant-eat/
3. http://www.petmd.com/dog/centers/nutrition/slideshows/toxic-foods-for-dogs
4. http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control/people-foods-avoid-feeding-your-pets
5. http://www.vetstreet.com/our-pet-experts/video-10-great-halloween-safety-tips-for-pets#0_mm2m3rfj
6. http://www.banfield.com/pet-health-resources/pet-health-concerns/pet-safety-tips/halloween-costume-safety-tips-for-your-dog
7. http://www.petmd.com/dog/seasonal/evr_multi_halloween_safety_tips?page=2