Hi, Felix Floofy McFloofster here. Well, that’s what my owner calls me. Personally, I prefer to be called simply Felix, because being a macho Maine Coon is hard enough, without having a nickname like Floofy McFloofster. Where was I? Oh that’s right—I was about to tell you my Halloween horror story. Don’t worry though—it has a happy ending.
It was a dark and eerie night about this time last year when everything went wrong. I was curled up in my favorite chair taking a much-needed snooze when I heard the doorbell ringing, and ringing, and ringing. I finally got up to investigate, because I couldn’t figure out why my owners wouldn’t open the door and let the guests in so I could get back to sleep. When I got to the door, some cute little kids were on the porch, and my owners were giving them candy. No big deal, right? But suddenly, out of nowhere, I heard a bone-chilling cackle and saw a hooded monster coming for me. My tail puffed up like a bottle brush, my eyes got huge, and I dashed between my owner’s legs and ran through the door in terror. By the time I calmed down, I had run so far that I didn’t know where I was. I searched for home, but the hours turned into days. Wet, cold, hungry days. Finally, when I had given up all hope of seeing my owners and my warm cozy house again, a kind person rescued me and took me to Loving Family Animal Hospital. The wonderful people there scanned my microchip, called my owners, and in a matter of hours, I was home again.
Make mine a microchip
Felix can thank his lucky stars—or microchip—for getting him home safely. An estimated one in three pets will go missing at some point in their lifetime, and Halloween is one of the most common times, because scared pets dash out open doors during the hubbub of trick-or-treating or Halloween parties. A collar with identification tags is a great start, but collars can break or slip off, and are not on every pet all the time, so a microchip provides an added safety layer that your pet has always. A microchip the size of a grain of rice is implanted under the skin between your pet’s shoulder blades, and bears a unique code that can be detected by a microchip scanner and used to pull up your contact information.
Our Loving Family Animal Hospital team can microchip your pet during a routine visit with no anesthesia or special preparation needed. A microchipped dog is twice as likely to be reunited with their family, and in the case of a cat like Felix, microchips make reunification a whopping 20 times more likely. The final piece of the puzzle is ensuring that the microchip is registered and linked to your current contact information, because only 6 out of 10 microchips are registered, and an unregistered microchip is seldom useful in finding that pet’s owners. To learn more, contact us, or check out these microchip FAQs from the American Veterinary Medical Association.
Keep pet paws off the candy and decorations
Around Halloween, pets get themselves into trouble by chewing up decorations, knocking over candles, or helping themselves to the candy bucket, all of which can be dangerous or life-threatening. Candy wrappers or decoration pieces can cause stomach or intestinal obstructions that may require surgery. If your pet eats a glow stick, the substance inside, while non-toxic, leaves an unpleasant taste in their mouth. Toxic substances, such as chocolate, macadamia nuts, raisins, or xylitol, can all be found in some Halloween candies. Also, a curious pet can easily burn themselves or start a fire by a clumsy jack-o-lantern investigation. To prevent mishaps, keep all candy, decorations, and candles out of your pet’s reach. If your pet does get themselves in trouble, call Loving Family Animal Hospital, ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, or Pet Poison Helpline for advice.
Give your pet a monster’s lair
Many pets, like Felix, may be scared by costumes or Halloween decorations, overwhelmed by the number of people at the door, or likely to stick their nose where it doesn’t belong. To prevent escapees, stressed and upset pets, and toxic or dangerous situations, consider creating a safe space where your pet can hang out during the trick-or-treating or other Halloween festivities. Set up their “monster’s lair” with a comfy bed, water dish, soothing music, and exciting toys to keep them contained, entertained, and calm.
Does your pet have a microchip? If so, is the microchip registered with the correct contact information? If your answer is “No” or “I don’t know,” contact our Loving Family Animal Hospital team. We can scan your pet for a microchip, help you check the microchip contact information, or microchip your pet to ensure they can be found if they take a Halloween hike like Felix. We are also happy to answer your other Hallowen pet safety questions.