THIS Halloween, don't be haunted by a mistake that caused your animal companion to become lost, sick, or hurt.

Follow these tips to ensure that All Hallows' Eve is delightful, not frightful, for animals.

Unattended animals – especially black cats – are easy prey for Halloween tricksters, so keep your companions safe indoors.

A constant stream of "ghosts" and "ghouls" at the door can spook animals, so make sure they have access to a secluded room with a TV or radio playing to calm them.

Walk dogs early in the day, long before the witching hour, and avoid a cauldron of trouble by making sure they're microchipped and wearing current ID tags.

Ingredients like chocolate, nuts, raisins, and the artificial sweetener xylitol can be toxic to dogs and cats, so prevent animals from 'goblin' unhealthy treats by keeping them out of reach and warning children and guests not to share sweets with animals.

Make sure they can't get to potentially hazardous decorations like streamers, candles, and lighted pumpkins, either.

Being dressed in costumes can cause animals stress and impair their ability to see, move, and breathe, and small parts can pose a choking hazard.

Be Frankenkind by leaving fancy dress to humans and letting cats and dogs be their naturally adorable selves.


Senior media officer, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA),

All Saints Street, London N1