How We Managed Pet Stress and Anxieties With These Halloween Safety Tips

This post is sponsored by ADAPTIL® and FELIWAY®, but all thoughts, opinions, and cute pet photos are 100% my own.

It can be a spooky season for your pets! Manage your pet stress and anxieties this season with Halloween safety tips and tricks. #ad #FeliwayCat #AdaptilDog

It’s DEFINITELY beginning to look a lot like Halloween around here these days.

Now that we have a new puppy here, I’m realizing more than ever how the changing of the seasons and holidays has an impact on pets. It simply does. Whether it’s the craziness of house guests and travel during the late fall and winter holidays, or the constant ringing of the doorbell for Halloween, we really need to think about our pets right now, and how to help!

Luckily, we have tips for you!

Halloween Safety Tips and Tricks:

1 – Keep that treat bowl out of reach! There are many treats that can sicken or kill your pets, including chocolate (especially dark chocolate), hard candy, raisins and grapes, macadamia nuts, xylitol and more.

2 – Educate your children about keeping treats from pets. I never let down my guard, but there are conversations we have about what can hurt our pets with both kids and Scarlet (age 9) knows how important it is to protect them.

3 – Keep your pets away from the front door! My lovely, polite and wonderful dogs are also top-notch escape artists. Many times, we have chased them around and through the woods, to Grandmother’s house we go.

4 – Don’t take your pets trick-or-treating. You never really know how your pets will react to strangers in costumes. Just like your kids! Also, there are ample opportunities to steal candy and/or run away when trick-or-treating.

5 – Make sure your pet’s ID is current. Athena has a microchip, and we have to make sure the contact information is current, and that she’s wearing her ID tag on her collar. If she does escape, we want people to know she’s ours.

6 – Beware of electrical wires and cords. In this house, we do put out Halloween lights and decorations, but the dogs go on little chewing binges if we’re not careful. An electrical shock is very dangerous to pets.

7 – Give them their own treats, of course. Why would they feel left out about the candy bars, when they have their own special pumpkin treats?

It can be a spooky season for your pets! Manage your pet stress and anxieties this season with Halloween safety tips and tricks. #ad #FeliwayCat #AdaptilDog

And lastly, do what you can to keep them calm this Halloween season.

In our house, it’s FELIWAY® CLASSIC for cats and ADAPTIL® for dogs. FELIWAY® CLASSIC mimics the natural feline facial pheromone that cats use to mark their territory as safe and secure. This helps cats cope with stressful situations, like loud noises, trick-or-treaters, and parties. You’ll love it because it creates a state of familiarity and security, and that helps to comfort and reassure cats as they cope with these stressful situations. And it might lead to the reduction or elimination of unwanted stress-related behaviors, like hiding, scratching, and urine spraying. It’s also non-sedating and has no contraindications.

FELIWAY® CLASSIC Spray can be applied to your cat’s bedding or favorite toy to reduce stress at home. We also use FELIWAY® Classic Diffusers in our house. I keep one spray and one diffuser plugged in by our Halloween decorations.

It can be a spooky season for your pets! Manage your pet stress and anxieties this season with Halloween safety tips and tricks. #ad #FeliwayCat #AdaptilDog

Then there’s ADAPTIL® for Athena and Astro. This is a copy of the natural canine-appeasing pheromone that dogs know from birth, and that helps them feel more safe and secure in their surroundings. It creates a state of familiarity and security, which helps to comfort and reassure dogs when they cope with stressful situations – like loud noises, travel, and vet visits – and is clinically proven to reduce or eliminate unwanted stress-related behaviors like excessive licking, hiding, trembling, barking, destroying items, decreased appetite, and house soiling. Halloween can be a stressful time for dogs.

ADAPTIL® comes in several easy-to-use forms, like a diffuser for ADAPTIL® to apply to your dog’s bedding or toys and ADAPTIL® Calm On-the-go Collar for traveling. There is also an ADAPTIL® diffuser. Athena uses the collar.

It can be a spooky season for your pets! Manage your pet stress and anxieties this season with Halloween safety tips and tricks. #ad #FeliwayCat #AdaptilDog

With decorations like these, you should always be prepared for pet stress. We wouldn’t keep such decorations if our pets were suffering, or if we didn’t have a plan to manage the stress and anxieties of this Halloween season.

It can be a spooky season for your pets! Manage your pet stress and anxieties this season with Halloween safety tips and tricks. #ad #FeliwayCat #AdaptilDog

ADAPTIL® and FELIWAY® products are available through your veterinarian, Amazon and at PetSmart. To find ADAPTIL® near you, check it out here. You can also find FELIWAY® near you here.

Do your pets have stress and anxiety around Halloween time?

I Am Groot: The Best Halloween There Ever Was

I wrote this post four years ago, only a few weeks after my sister’s wedding. So this week we celebrate my sister’s four year anniversary and also remember the time Cassidy took the words “I Am Groot” way too seriously. And it was awesome.

This was to be the year I dropped the ball on Halloween.

Sometimes I have tunnel vision and it’s nothing to brag about. When there’s something big on the horizon, it’s hard to focus on smaller things before or after that big thing. Say for example, it’s senior prom. Say you have a major physics project due the Monday after prom weekend, but you can’t even think about it until after the prom is over and you’re back home and your sister’s boyfriend makes your project for you, and it doesn’t even work, but it’s so special and homemade that your teacher gives you an “A” on it and you don’t even have to take your physics final exam. You get to sit out in the hallway with a book and look in at all of the much smarter (at physics) kids and watch them take the final exam you’ll never take.

Somehow, somewhere, somewhat, sometimes, dropping the ball on something still looks like this:

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Cassidy may call it luck. I may call it that too, but also skill because I’m surrounded by wonderful and creative people and hey, I did take care of Des’ costume, and my own, and I did take a lot of photos and I did write this post, and I helped Cassidy in and out of that costume 17,000 times and I broke a few sweats too. I’m not calling myself completely useless at Halloween this year, but I was not the star to shine. And that was ok. My tunnel vision only allowed for my sister’s wedding, and a ton of photo shoots before and after that. Meanwhile while I was in my fog, Cassidy was dreaming and planning, only SIX DAYS BEFORE HALLOWEEN. And then dreaming and planning turned into working. And sharing that wisdom.

He wrote out a whole DIY of his costume with photos that you can see here.

My brain doesn’t work the way his does.

Heck, my brain can’t even wrap my head around how someone ELSE’S brain could work like this, much less.. work like this.

I Am Groot.

I am Groot

I am Groot

I am Groot

I am Groot

I am Groot

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Since I never met a Top Ten list I didn’t like, here’s my “Top Ten Things I Loved About Halloween 2014.” And quite like the wedding post, I started writing this on Halloween night. It actually wrote itself. So now I present it to you. There’s Halloween. There’s Halloween as a parent. And there’s Halloween as a parent in a really cool town. How about Halloween as a parent in a really cool town, with Groot, Rocket and Superman. You never know, do you? I didn’t drop the ball after all.

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The Top Ten Best Things about Halloween 2014:

1 – In the morning, Des and I went to Scarlet’s school to watch the kindergarten classes make a parade around the entire school in costume. We had some time to kill after the parade and before the half-day dismissal and I had a wonderful hang out and heart-to-heart on the playground with Scarlet’s friend’s mom. Bonus is that Des fell asleep in the swing!

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2 – Walking around all day with the best costume contest winner, which got him a prize ($$$). I was just darn proud. I’d tell anyone who listened to me, “That’s MY husband. He made that costume himself!”

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3 – Walking around town and seeing friends, and clients, and people who are both friends AND clients!

4 – Going to River Valley Market to get some late-night snacks. In costume, of course.

River Valley

5 – The car needed gas and it’s always fun to get gas on Halloween because you’re getting gas next to a clown, a witch, and oh yeah – the woman in front of you is the secretary at Scarlet’s school! You have to love our small city.

6 – Walking in the parade with Scarlet holding onto my stroller with one hand, and holding hands with two friends from preschool with the other hand. They were all telling each other Halloween riddles and cracking each other up.

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7 – Realizing Cassidy’s artistic potential as reflected back from the faces of hundreds of people. Heck, thousands.

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8 – We stopped by a friend’s party after trick-or-treating. There was a giant, amazing, handmade, remote (or radio?)-controlled Frankenstein on their lawn! It could move and talk and had a microphone where someone inside could look outside and talk to kids walking by. It was AMAZING. I was in a cloud of Groot pride and care, but this deserves its own post. I wish I had photos but I didn’t have my camera at that point, because.. Groot, Des, stroller, freezing, candy bags, etc. My friend’s dad made it when he was only 13 and it was passed down to my friend’s family. Seriously, amazing.

9 – Scarlet told me I was the prettiest Snow White she had ever seen! The fairest of them all?

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10 – I stole a piece of candy from Des’ bucket at 1:00am. It was a Milky Way. I hadn’t had one in years!

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*Bonus that he really only said “I am Groot” when people tried to talk to him!

I’m sure I have an honorable mention for every single person I saw out there that night. I know I spout a lot about the online blogging love (which is real and fierce!), but my in-person people are pretty spectacular too.

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Everywhere I walked that night, in a city of thousands, I saw a familiar and beautiful face.

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And like with my sister’s wedding, I’m a bit sad that it’s all over.

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However. Halloween comes every year. (unless it’s Snowtober, in which case it gets skipped, sorta.)

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What on earth will we do next year?

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So, what was the best Halloween of your life?