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                        Halloween Dog Bite Prevention Tips  

                          Presented by doggonesafe.com and leashes4life.org                                                           

                                                     Please feel free to share with your family, friends, neighbors and schools                    

Halloween is lots of fun for kids, but many dogs will be confused or upset by kids in strange costumes, different sounds and by lots of people coming to the door but never being invited in. Halloween should     be "fright night" for humans not dogs.  Screaming, running, spooky children in masks make many dogs uncomfortable, nervous and frightened.

         Halloween costumes are fun and are meant to disguise our normal appearance. Dogs do not understand this change in appearance and may become frightened. Costumes can change the way a   person walks, stands or their general appearance and may cause a dog to react differently than usual   even with people they know. Some costumes are frightening but others may be interesting too. Swords, tails and dangling things could be fun for an excited dog to chase and toddlers certainly wouldn’t  appreciate that.

       Keep in mind that on Halloween night children are excited and doing their best to be scary. This is   not a fair or safe situation to put even the best of dogs in and a normally terrific and tolerant family dog can find this night hard to handle.

Halloween safety tips for dog owners, kids and parents:

Dog owners:

Secure your dog in a room or in a crate away from the front door or any party.

Give him a stuffed Kong or other long-lasting chew.

Play music or leave a TV or radio playing in the dog’s room to help mask the sounds of activity at   the front door.

Close drapes so that the dog does not see people coming and going through the window.

If you have a dog that barks at the sound of the doorbell, disconnect it or watch for                     trick-or-treaters so that they do not have to ring or knock.

Costumes with dangly bits or streaming material can overly excite puppies and dogs that like to chase. Supervise them very carefully if you have a dog that may try to play with the children’s costumes. Teach the kids to stand still if a dog does start nipping at their costume since the more they move, the more exited the dog will get.

Keep your dogs (and cats) indoors around Halloween time. Pets have been stolen, injured or   poisoned as part of Halloween pranks or other rituals.

Kids and Parents:

Avoid houses if you can hear a dog barking behind the door or a fence, or you can see a dog      behind a screen door or tied up in the yard.

Never approach any dog, even if you know him. He may not recognize you in your costume.

If an owner opens the door and a dog is present, just stay still and wait for the dog owner to         put the dog away. You can tell them you do not want to come near the dog. Do not move toward the person and dog. Wait for them to come to you to give you your candy. Wait for them to close the door before you turn and leave.

If a dog escapes, or you meet a loose dog, or if any dog approaches, just stand still and:

Be a Tree:

1.Stop.

2.Fold in your branches (hands folded in front).

3.Watch your roots grow (look at your feet).

4.Count your breaths in your head until help comes or the dog goes away.

He will usually just sniff you and then move on. Wait for the owner to come and get the dog before you turn away.

It is best to ignore other people’s dogs on Halloween if you meet them out walking. The dog may be worried about all the strange creatures that are out and about. Even if you know the dog, he may not recognize you in your costume.

    Important : Chocolate is toxic to dogs.  Put candy in a safe spot.

Doggone Safe and Leashes 4 Life IAD wishes everyone be safe, aware and have fun! Happy Halloween