This Halloween, follow these tips to ensure a happy All Hallows’ Eve for animals.

Unattended animals – especially black cats – are easy prey for Halloween tricksters, so keep your companions safe indoors. A constant stream of ‘ghosts’ and ‘ghouls’ at the door can spook animals, so make sure they have access to a secluded room. Walk dogs early in the day.

Ingredients like chocolate, nuts, raisins, and the artificial sweetener xylitol can be toxic to dogs and cats, so keep them out of reach of animals and warn children and guests not to share sweets with animals. Dressing animals in costumes can cause them stress and impair their ability to see, move, and breathe. Leave fancy dress to humans and let cats and dogs be their natural selves.

Jennifer White,

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), London