For many dogs and dog parents alike, Halloween festivities can quickly turn into a nightmare.
If your dog is reactive to the sound of a doorbell, or if they become fearful or overexcited when visitors arrive, the tips below can help you and your dog survive this year’s event.
- Prevent your dog from getting to the door!
- Place masking tape over the doorbell and write, “Do not use” on the tape. This will discourage visitors from ringing the doorbell and upsetting your dog.
- Place your dog in an enclosed room as far away from the front door as possible and give him his own treat bag filled with a variety of chew products and a new toy.
- In the room in which your dog is contained, turn the radio or TV on low to help mask the sounds of visitor traffic.
- Exercise your dog as much as possible 90 minutes prior to prime “trick or treat” traffic so that he is tired.
- Consider boarding your dog for the evening if he is overly anxious or fearful of strangers.
- Ask a neighbor or friend to host a “treat table” with you at the end of your driveway. It’s a shorter walk for the kids and not having hoards of trick or treaters arrive at the door will be easier on your dog.
- If your dog lives outside, please bring him indoors. Swarms of kids in unrecognizable costumes, heavy vehicle traffic and noise can quickly overwhelm dogs and threaten their sense of safety.
If you don’t feel confident surviving the evening with your reactive dog, you could always take the easy way out and turn out your lights!
Stranger fear, anxiety, over-excitement and doorbell reactivity are common dog problems and they are treatable. If you are interested in helping your pet overcome such a problem, contact us today.