Dear Davi,

Tricky treats and dangerous streets make Halloween a scary night for pets. How can we have a spook-free holiday and still have fun?

Norman the Newfoundland


Because we are not clued in to the haunts and howls of the holiday, Halloween can turn even a friendly ghost into a scaredy-cat. Don’t dismay. I’ve sniffed out some ways you and your human can bring on the fun without the fright — unless that’s your thing, in which case, scare on.

Host a Howl-O-Ween Party 
Invite your playmates from the park for a spook-tacular celebration. A party is a fun way for you and your furry friends to mingle, romp and enjoy tasty Halloween treats, like bone biscuits and pumpkin pops. When planning your party, keep your four-legged pals in mind:

  • Hold a party in a place with plenty of space to play.
  • Keep festivities short, maybe an hour or two — even party animals can tucker out before midnight.
  • Decorate with anything scary, ghostly and gross — something spidery is a nice touch. Make sure the decorations are out of reach of pets — streamers or plastic pieces can be choking hazards.
  • Organize a few games — like bobbing for eyeballs or bark-O-lantern!
  • Give guests a doggie bag filled with ghoulish goodies before they sneak out the door.

Have a Costume Pet Parade 
With Halloween creeping around the corner, why not round up the hounds in your ’hood to dress up for fun?

  • Get into the spirit by wearing something to resemble a superhero, another animal or a favorite food — I’m going as a candy corn dog!
  • Clear a short path in a safe area to avoid pranksters or potential hazards.
  • Invite friends to watch from the sidewalk while pets and their people prance around the block, decked out in festive or ghastly garb.
  • Once the parade is over, head to a happy haunt for a wrap-up with prizes and treats.

Have a Scary Movie Night
A scary movie marathon can be a thrilling way to spend Halloween. Invite some of your closest canine buds for creepy cult classics sure to have dogs — and humans — jumping out of their skins.


  • Get lots of comfy pillows, blankets and pet beds to set the stage.
  • Keep the lights low — there’s nothing like darkness to make things super-spooky.
  • Serve a frightful feast of snacks and treats to nosh while watching movies.
  • Pick from spine-chilling flicks like The Shining or Texas Chainsaw Massacre, or something more tame, like Ghostbusters or Gremlins. If you want to make your guests scream and bark, show Pet Sematary or Cujo. For the meek, stick with an old-time favorite, like It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. I recommend Frankenweenie.
  • Schedule intermissions for potty walks and bathroom breaks.
  • Offer toys for those who’ve already seen the film.

No matter how you celebrate, make sure you celebrate safely:


Davi the dachshund may have been bred to hunt badgers, but he’s not a psycho killa … or is he?