Keep Pets Safe This Halloween

Published on October 27, 2023

City of San Antonio Animal Care Services Department   

SAN ANTONIO (October 27, 2023) – Halloween is traditionally a family-oriented holiday, and many people like to include their pets in the festivities. But good intentions can go bad if you do not keep in mind the many dangers pets can face at this time of year. 

The City of San Antonio Animal Care Services would like to share these tips as your family prepares for the trick-or-treating season:

  • Chocolate of any type, even a nibble, can be toxic and potentially fatal to dogs and cats. Keep holiday goodies such as candies and cookies away from your pets.
  • Talk to your kids about the danger of giving your pet Halloween treats. 
  • Cellophane and foil wrappers, lollipop and caramel apple sticks should be thrown away immediately. They pose a choking hazard to pets if swallowed. 
  • Trick-or-treating may be fun for the family, but the constant ringing of the doorbell can scare your pet. Provide a quiet, safe place for your pet to relax. 
  • Although it may be tempting to bring Fido along while trick-or-treating, holiday masks and costumes could be threatening to your family pet. Fear may lead to protective or aggressive behavior like biting and growling. 
  • Keep your pet safe inside for the evening if you’re worried trick-or-treaters may scare or bother your outdoor pet. 
  • Halloween decorations, like jack-o-lantern candles and electric strings of lights can spark curiosity in pets. Keep them out of reach.
  • Not all pets will tolerate wearing a costume or embellished collar. Get your pet in on the Halloween fun by providing a holiday-themed treat for them to enjoy.

Think your pet may have ingested something toxic? Head to or call the nearest pet emergency clinic. You can also call the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) Pet Poison Control Center at 1-888-426-4435, charges may apply.