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North Shore Animal League America Offers Halloween Safety Tips For Pet Parents

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Media & Communications Department
Phone: (516) 883-7900, Ext. 482
Mobile: (516) 528-7878

October 25, 2011 (Port Washington, NY) – As households across the country prepare for Halloween, North Shore Animal League America - the world’s largest no-kill animal rescue and adoption organization - provides tips on how pet lovers can enjoy the holiday and keep their animals safe. Dr. Mark Verdino, the Animal League’s VP and Chief of Veterinary Staff, suggests following these guidelines:

  • Make sure pets have identification on at all times. With doors opening frequently for trick-or-treaters, pets could run out.
  • Give pets a quiet, safe place. Parties, doorbell ringing or too many strangers can be stressful, even making animals physically ill.
  • Candy, wrappers and decorations should be kept out of a pet’s reach. Chocolate can be toxic, and many sugar-free candies, gum and baked products contain xylitol, a sweetener that is toxic to dogs. Tinfoil, cellophane and plastic candy wrappers can be hazardous if swallowed. If you suspect that a pet has ingested xylitol, call a veterinarian immediately.
  • Keep lit pumpkins out of a pet's reach. Pets can knock over pumpkins, and curious kittens run the risk of being burned.
  • Keep electrical cords and wires out of a pet’s reach. Decorations can be harmful, and deadly, should pets chew or ingest them.
  • It is never a good idea to take a pet trick-or-treating. Keep pets inside so they will not be the target of pranksters.
  • Be careful while walking pets. In addition to pranksters, there may be harmful residue on the street and sidewalk. Watch for eggs, silly string, toilet paper, candy, and other substances that your dog may try to ingest.
  • Do not dress up pets unless you know they enjoy it. Make sure the costume is not annoying or unsafe, and does not restrict movement, vision, hearing, or the ability to breathe or bark. Avoid costumes with dangling accessories that a pet could chew and swallow. Ensure that costumed pets are supervised at all times.

For more information on pet safety and adoption, visit

North Shore Animal League America - Home of the Mutt-i-gree® - headquartered in Port Washington, NY, is the largest no-kill animal rescue and adoption organization in the world. The Animal League reaches across the country to rescue, nurture and adopt 20,000 pets into happy and loving homes each year. Over the past decade, the Animal League saved over 200,000 lives and has saved 1,000,000 animals since its inception. “Like” us at, follow us at To learn more about animal rescue and welfare, visit

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