Pet Tales

Tips on keeping pets safe during Halloween

With Halloween coming up, I wanted to share some tips from the Humane Society of the United States about how to help keep your pets safe during Halloween.

“Keep pets safely inside, away from trick-or-treaters and other Halloween activities. Frequently opened doors provide a perfect opportunity for escape, which can go unnoticed during all of the commotion.

“Be sure all pets are wearing collars with ID tags in case of accidental escape.

“Candy can be harmful to pets, and chocolate is toxic to cats, dogs and ferrets.

“Flames in jack-o’-lanterns and candles can quickly singe, burn or set fire to a pet’s fur. Pets can become tangled in hanging decorations like streamers and can choke on some decorations if they chew on them.

“Resist the urge to put your furry friend in costume. Most pets dislike the confinement of costumes and masks, and flowing capes can cause injuries if pets get caught on something.

“Don’t bring the family dog along for trick-or-treating. Dogs may become difficult to handle during the noise and confusion of the festivities. A lost dog or dog bite will quickly end your Halloween fun.”

The HSUS also cautions animal shelters not to adopt out black cats during the Halloween season.

Unfortunately during Halloween, black cats are the targets of pranks, mischief or worse; that can put cats at a high risk of being harmed. People with black cats should be extra careful about keeping their cats safe during this time of year.

Animal-related events

Woods Humane Society hosts its Wiggle Waggle Walk for Woods from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at Laguna Lake Park in San Luis Obispo. The event includes a one-mile walk, K-9 working dog demonstrations, West Coast freestyle, K-9 good citizen testing, a barbecue, an ice cream dessert booth, a raffle and contests.

For more information, call 543-9316 or visit

Pacific Coast Cutting Horse Association Futurity runs through Oct. 31 at the Paso Robles Event Center. The competitions begin around 8 a.m. each day and can run late in the evening. For more information, visit to

The Santa Ynez Valley Arabian Horse Association is accepting registrations for the Sage Hill Open Horse Competitive Trail Ride which is taking place Nov. 5 through Nov. 7 at Live Oak Camp off Highway 154 near Lake Cachuma. The association is also seeking volunteers to work at pulse and respiration checkpoints, to assist judges in recording points for horse health and horsemanship, or to be a gate opener.

The ride features three divisions: open, competitive pleasure, and novice. The terrain includes wooded glens, water crossings, sandy washes, rocky river beds, meadows and rolling hills. Open riders cover 50 to 60 miles in the two-day period; competitive pleasure and novice riders cover 35 to 40 miles. The event also includes a one-day novice ride of 23 miles and a 12-mile introductory ride for those who want to learn more about the sport.

Checkpoints are located at strategic points along the trail to track the health of the horses and gauge a rider’s ability to perform such tasks as stepping over obstacles, backing up on the trail and riding up a slope.

Rider entry forms are online at or call 710-4471 or 688-2912.

If you would like to volunteer, call 710-4471 or e-mail

If you have a story or photos of your furry, feathered or scaly friend, please e-mail or mail to Pet Tales, c/o The Tribune, P.O. Box 112, San Luis Obispo, CA 93406.