Cats may be a major Halloween symbol, but there are some parts of this holiday that just don’t mix with our feline friends. Being aware of the potential Halloween dangers for cats will help kitty parents celebrate this holiday with peace of mind.
It’s all a matter of taste — cats simply don’t have sweet tooths. However, felines may be attracted to the high fat content found in many candies. And since some candies also contain toxic ingredients, it’s much safer to keep all candy away from your cats.
Chocolate tops the list of candy that is toxic to cats. All chocolate — even white chocolate and unsweetened baking chocolate — contains two potentially dangerous ingredients: caffeine and theobromine, both of which are stimulants.
If your cat eats chocolate, she may experience these symptoms:
Non-chocolate treats can be just as harmful. Cats don’t usually crave sugar, but don’t let your kitty be the exception! Sugar itself isn’t toxic, but too much can cause gas and diarrhea and lead to obesity and diabetes. Lollipop sticks and smaller bite-size candies are also choking hazards for cats.
Discarded candy wrappers are dangerous to cats, too. Curious kitties may leap into action and bat at shiny, interesting wrappers, but enticing smells may be too hard to resist. Cats who chew on wrappers may accidentally swallow them, and the sharp edges can irritate and damage their digestive organs.
As you transform your humble home into a haunted extravaganza, be aware of your cat’s spook meter — even the most sociable and brave feline might be scared by noisy, animated decorations.
Dried cornstalks look festive, but may be harmful. Corn husks and the silky fibers are choking hazards and if cats do swallow them, they’re not easily digestible and may cause stomach upset. Halloween-themed balloons are another threat — ribbons can get tangled up in your cat’s intestines or cause blockages in their digestive tracts.
Dangling electrical cords could be a double whammy. Cats who chew on electrical cords can suffer mouth, tongue and gum burns or electrocution, and curious, playful cats can get tangled up in the cords. In an effort to free themselves, felines could accidentally drag down decorations or knock over fragile items, resulting in cuts or bruises.
Flickering flames can easily tempt an inquisitive paw, which could cause burns or even fires. Please don’t leave your cat alone with any unattended candles.
Grinning Jack-o-lanterns are iconic this time of year, but they’re a Halloween danger for cats. Harmful bacteria grows and multiplies as pumpkins rot. And, what’s to stop your cat’s inner wild child from sampling some pumpkin? If your cat ingests these bacteria, she can experience severe nausea, diarrhea and intestinal distress.
Adorable Halloween costumes for your cat are fun, but never leave your cat unattended while in costume — she can injure herself while trying to get it off. And please don’t force your kitty into a costume against her will. Doing so will stress your cat (and you!) out.
Do you worry your cats will zip out the door when you greet trick-or-treaters? Cats may startle at the sight of unfamiliar people or noises, race away in any direction and get lost.
Follow these tips to keep your cats safe when trick-or-treaters stop by:
Thumbnail: Photography © mihakonceptcorn | Thinkstock.
This piece was originally published in 2017.
Read more about fall fun with cats on Catster.com: