Pet Safety Precautions For The Fall Season

It's a great time of year to get out and about with your pets. Before you jump into that first pile of leaves, sip that first pumpkin spice latte, or walk down that first fall trail, make sure they're safe. Understanding autumn hazards and how to avoid them is critical for you and your pet to enjoy the season safely.

Fall Hazards Pets Face

The specific dangers that your pet may face as the sun sets and temperatures drop will depend not only on the type of pet you have, but also on its general health, your local climate, and the activities that you and your pet enjoy. The following are the most common autumn hazards that affect pets:

Rodenticides: Since more mice, rats, and other rodents seek shelter in homes during the autumn season, more poisons and traps are set out for them. These pest control methods are just as dangerous and lethal to pets as they are to other unwanted visitors.

Fleas and ticks: While these biting pests are less active in the fall, they can still be present, especially in warmer climates. Fleas and ticks can be particularly aggressive in piles of leaves and other debris in the fall, and they can easily infest pets who spend more time outside.

Cold Weather: If there is a sudden autumn cold snap, any outdoor pets are at risk. Temperature drops can cause hypothermia or frostbite, and even mildly colder temperatures can aggravate certain health conditions in pets, such as arthritis or joint problems.

Furnace Heat: Small pets can suffer when furnace heat is turned on in the fall, especially if their cages, crates, tanks, or aquariums are near vents. Home heating causes drier air, which can cause skin irritation, allergy flare-ups, and other discomfort in pets.

Holiday Treats: Pumpkin spice goodies of all kinds kick off the holiday treat season, followed by Halloween candy, Thanksgiving feasts, and other rich and delicious dishes. However, many of these foods, such as chocolate, fat, and spices, can be extremely toxic to pets.

Decorations: Various decorations popular during the autumn holidays can be hazardous to pets. Electrical hazards are posed by light strands, open candle flames are a fire hazard, and various decorations may contain sharp edges, glass parts, or toxic paints and dyes.

Wildlife: Raccoons, snakes, skunks, and other animals become more active in the fall as they feed heavily and look for places to hibernate. If pets come into contact with these wild visitors, they may suffer injuries or disease transmission.

Darkness: As the days grow shorter in fall, that early morning or evening walk may be in near total darkness. This makes it more difficult to see pets if they become loose, and they may be in danger from vehicles or simply become lost.