This time of year can be very scary for dogs. The shorter days mean going outside in the dark, which many dogs are wary of. The strange sights and loud noises associated with Halloween celebrations can also put dogs on edge. The combination of these over the weeks around Halloween can cause dogs to do things they typically would not do. It is a time when many get spooked and run off.

There are a few things you can do to help keep your dog safe at this time of year.

Be mindful of open doors

Do not leave doors open unattended. Be aware of where your dog is when you need to open a door and open them with caution. As an extra precaution, you can have your dog on a leash or behind a barrier before opening the door.

In the yard

If you are letting your dog out loose into a yard, be sure that all fencing is secure and high enough that your dog cannot escape. Do not leave your dog unattended in the yard. If necessary, take your dog out on a long line as an extra precaution.

Out on walks

Leaving the property can be especially worrisome for some dogs. Being away from the security of home while presented with the sights and sounds of the season at full intensity can cause many dogs to startle and bolt. Be sure to keep your attention on your dog and have a secure hold of the leash at all times. If you let your dog off leash, consider using a long line at this time of year.

Keep your dog’s ID on

Taking proper precautions will help keep your dog secure, but it is still best to prepare for the unexpected. Keep a collar with ID on your dog at all times. Whether your dog bolts out the door unexpectedly, escapes the yard or runs off on a walk, a collar and ID will help to get them back to you more quickly. Exceptions to this include when your dog is home alone or in another area of the house at night, as tags can present a risk.

If your dog appears to take the sights and sounds of Halloween in stride, that’s awesome. But since no one plans to have an accident – it’s better not to presume it can’t happen to you or your dog. It only takes a bit of extra care to ensure our dogs stay safe at this time. And they’re worth it!

Stay tuned for more tips and ideas in our Halloween safety series. You can join our free group Positive Dog Life for more on this.