Open mobile navigation

Halloween Pet Safety

Halloween is one of the spookiest nights of the year, but keeping your pet safe doesn't have to be tricky. Our staff at River Mill Animal Hospital would like to remind owners how to have fun and to protect their pets during the festivities. 

Stash the treats:

  • The candy bowl is for trick-or-treaters only! All types of chocolate are dangerous and deadly to pets. Symptoms of ingestion include vomiting, diarrhea, rapid breathing, increased heart rate, and siezures. In addition to chocolate, candies containing the artificial sweetner, Xylitol, cause a sudden drop in blood sugar, subsequent loss of coordination and seizures can occur. 

Watch the decorations and keep wires out of reach:

  • A carved Jack-o-lantern certainly is festive however, a lit pumpkin can easily be knocked over and potentially cause a fire. Popular Halloween plants such as pumpkins and decorative corn can cause gastrointestinal upset if ingested in large quantities. Intestinal blockage can also occur if indigestible pieces are swallowed. Electrical wires should be hidden away from pets, chewing on cords can cause electrocution.

Be careful with costumes:

  • For some pets, wearing a costume may cause undue stress. When dressing up your pet make sure the costume does not limit their movement, sight, and ability to breathe. Examine the costume carefully for small dangling or easily chewed-off pieces as these can be a choking hazard. Be sure to try on the costume before the big night. If they seem stressed or uncomfortable, remove the costume. A simple festive bandana is all they need. 

Keep pets calm and easily identifiable:

  • Halloween brings a flurry of activity with visitor arriving at the door. Pets are naturally territorial and may become aggressive with strangers. It's best to place your pet in a separate room or crate away from the door. This will prevent unwanted aggression and the possibility of them escaping into the haunted night. It is important for your pet to wear proper identification. A collar with ID tags and a microchip with updated information is the key to a safe return home. 

From everyone at River Mill Animal Hospital, we wish you and your family a safe and spooky Halloween! If you have any questions or concerns regarding microchip information, please call 813-501-4985.

New Patients Receive a Complimentary Exam.

Office Hours


8:00 am-5:30 pm


8:00 am-5:30 pm


8:00 am-5:30 pm


8:00 am-5:30 pm


8:00 am-5:30 pm


8:00 am-12:00 pm





  • "Dr Hodge takes the time to really know your pet and seeks out the most current information regarding their diagnosis. The staff is fantastic and treat my babies like their own."
    Danielle S.

Featured Articles

Newsletter Sign Up