If your dog gets into the Halloween candy, trick or treat could turn into a horror story! Halloween is often a dangerous time for dogs, because chocolate and many other kinds of candy are poisonous to them. Dogs are attracted to the sweet smells of chocolate and other treats, and they might start munching before you can stop them. If your dog ate a bunch of candy or swallowed a candy wrapper, the vets at East Valley Animal Hospital can help you prevent an emergency. 

Halloween candy is dangerous for dogs!

Store candy out of reach of your pet, and never leave candy lying out unattended. Keep a close eye on your dog during Halloween parties and trick-or-treating to make sure they don’t indulge. Be careful during walks around the neighborhood as well, in case there’s any forgotten candy or wrappers lying around for them to sniff out and swallow. Keep trash secure as well, because candy wrappers can also cause serious digestive issues for dogs.

Five Trick-or-Treat Favorites to Keep Away from Dogs

1: Chocolate

Eating a small amount of chocolate will probably only result in vomiting and diarrhea, but in large amounts, chocolate is extremely toxic to dogs. If your dog ate a lot of chocolate candy, it could cause heart problems, internal bleeding, tremors, or seizures.

2: Xylitol

Found in sugar-free treats, chewing gum, and some brands of candy corn, xylitol or “sugar alcohol,” is extremely toxic to dogs. It can cause seizures and in some cases may even be fatal. Even if the candy corn doesn’t contain xylitol, the high amounts of sucrose and glucose can cause vomiting and diarrhea in dogs.

3: Nuts and Raisins

Those mini boxes of raisins that often make their way into trick-or-treat baskets could cause kidney failure if your dog gets ahold of them. Candy bars with nuts can be equally dangerous—some types of nuts, like macadamias and walnuts, can cause tremors, seizures, or neurological damage.

4: Candy Wrappers

If your dog ate a candy wrapper, they’ll probably be able to pass it, but the process can be quite painful. In some cases, a candy wrapper could cause a serious bowel obstruction. 

5: Glow Sticks

The fluid inside a glow stick isn’t usually fatal to pets, but it does cause pain and irritation, excessive drooling, and foaming at the mouth

My dog ate candy! What do I do?

If you find an empty candy dish or an overturned trash bin, keep a close eye on your dog. Even if the type of candy they ate wasn’t toxic to dogs, eating large amounts of fatty, sugary candy could lead to pancreatitis. If your dog ate candy, early detection could save their life! Call an emergency vet right away if you notice symptoms like:

  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • lethargy
  • dehydration
  • decreased appetite
  • difficulty defecating
  • abdominal pain
  • agitation
  • tremors or seizures

If your dog ate candy, get help right away!

The veterinary doctors and staff at East Valley Animal Hospital are expertly trained and equipped to handle urgent care needs. If your pet needs emergency care for poisoning or chocolate ingestion, call us or come by immediately. We also provide urgent care if you feel your pet needs to be seen right away for a non-emergency situation. 

Call 480-568-2462 or bring your dog to our hospital at 81 West Guadalupe Road, Suite 105, in Gilbert, Arizona. We will assess your pet’s condition and get them the urgent treatment needed.


Photo by Ben Hanson on Unsplash used with permission under the Creative Commons license for commercial use 10/10/2021.