Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Happy HOWL-o-ween!

My kids are all teens or in college now, so the days of dressing up the little ones to go trick-or-treating have passed me by. However, I’ve found there’s a wealth of Halloween activities planned in my area for pet owners. HOWL-o-ween festivals abound, with dogs and cats dolled up in the cutest costumes. And of course, we pet lovers get to hang out and party!



We also discuss pet safety during the holidays… I would like to take this opportunity to share some of those tips with you:


*Keep candy out of reach of your pets. Chocolate, particularly dark chocolate, can be toxic.
*Foil wrappers, plastic wrappers and lollipop sticks can get lodged in an animal’s digestive tract.
*Be careful that pet costumes are comfy and not constricting the neck. Also be careful that they do not cover eyes and ears. Check for small part that can be choking hazards. If your pet seems stressed by the gear, ditch the costume, no matter how cute you might think it is. It’s still hot in Florida this time of year, so my dogs prefer a simple Halloween scarf.



*Keep wires and decorative lights out of pet’s reach so they don’t become entangled or chew through cords.
*Keep in mind that pets can knock over a Jack-o-lantern, a potential hazard for burning the pet or starting a fire.
*If you have a cat, be extra vigilant about keeping it indoors this time of year. Sadly, there are horrible people out there who would harm them – some shelters will not even adopt out black cats in October.

*Keep pets contained while trick-or-treaters are coming to the door. Either keep the pet in another room or place a pet gate in front of the door. It’s safer for your pet and for the trick-or-treaters.
*Always have an ID tag on your pet! (Too many pets show up at shelters with no ID, even animals that have clearly been cared for and loved.) Have a happy and safe Howl-o-ween!



What’s your favorite Halloween costume memory from your childhood?

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Look for my Sourcebooks debut – COVER ME - to land on shelves in July 2011. Meanwhile, I hope you will check out my November Silhouette Desire, THE MAVERICK PRINCE. FMI on all my upcoming releases check out my website or visit with me on Facebook.

28 comments:

  1. Hi Catherine, first off, I want your cover model!!!

    Hmm... My favorite costume--the only one I remember, was when I was thirteen and my girlfriend and I got old ballroom gowns and she and I canvassed the neighborhood as princesses. Hmm, no wonder I love historicals so much!! I used to be a princess!

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  2. Loved the puppy-pics!

    My dogs all gave me a down at the mouth, do I really have to do this look anytime my husband tried to dress them up.

    Yes, you read that right. He did it; the dogs looked to me for rescue.

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  3. Great pet safety tips, Catherine. The puppies are so adorable! And I love your cover. I can't recall a favorite costume, but I love taking my kids trick or treating. My daughter is going to be Taylor Swift this year. My son is twelve and not really interested in costumes, so he's going to wear his football uniform and stay home and hand out candy. We usually leave candy on the porch and go out together, but sometimes the older trick or treaters take advantage of unattended candy.

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  4. Where I live, trick or treaters never venture. If they did, my dog would steal all of their candy!

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  5. Awe, I love the puppy pics.

    I don't remember my costumes, but I do remember dressing my Irish setter like a baby and putting him in our big carriage and going trick-or-treating with him. Mulligan didn't seem to mind it at all. He would always get a ton of dog cookies for the humiliation.

    Mulligan was also the only bird dog I know who would allow my parakeet to ride around on his head and back.

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  6. Terry, I sure hope there are photos of your princess trick-or-treating year! Sounds like fun!!

    And thanks for the kudos on the cover. He is quite yummy, isn't he?! The cover art gods certainly smiled down on me!!

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  7. Mary Margaret, I love it that you know what your dogs are thinking/saying too! I vow to my family I know what my dogs' are trying to tell us. ;-)

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  8. Hi Anita! Glad you enjoyed the photos! The two puppies are my current foster pups for the Humane Society. (I've fostered more than 35 over the years.) I've had these two for about 5 weeks now. The one in the orange bandana just got adopted yesterday by a super nice yong police officer. My fingers are crossed the little girl pup gets adopted soon as well!

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  9. Cheryl, we don't get trick-or-treaters at my house either. Makes me kinda sad in some ways, but it also leaves me free to go to parties w/out worrying about folks getting mad that my outdoor light is off!

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  10. Robin, I ADORE the image of your Mulligan riding aroun in a baby carriage - toooooo precious!!

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  11. I live on a busy street and don't have any trick-or-treaters. Decorations would just be stolen, so we don't really do Halloween. But I think these are good tips for pet owners, not just for Halloween but other holidays too.

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  12. Catherine,
    I'm not a Halloween person but I love looking at the pictures of the dogs--I don't have a pet but I do think they are cute.

    Amelia

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  13. What cute pups!

    I grew up in northern Minnesota, where it's usually pretty darned cold at the end of October. Most years my costume was a ghost, or a witch of some variety, because I could disguise the snowmobile suit I was wearing with either a white sheet or a black cape.

    My SO and I live out in the boonies and we never get any trick-or-treaters. But we DO have a huge black cat to help us celebrate! (see tomorrow's blog entry)

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  14. Hi Tamara! LOL over costumes that could wrk with a snow suit! We lived in Michigan, ND and Ohio for a total of 9 years.... Kids had lots of bulky costumes. How very different costumes became when we moved to Florida. ;-)

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  15. My favorite costume was Sylvester the cat when I was in grade school, although a very close second is the Colonial gown my aunt made for me. I felt very elegant in it!

    Barney won't even wear a sweater the way my other dogs did. But he does love his bandanas.

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  16. Hi Linda! What a cool aunt you had for her to have made that costume for you! My m-i-l once made my oldest son a Captain Planet costume - he loooooved it! We have great photos of him wearing it. :) Love the memories!

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  17. OMG! Puppies!! Thanks for the great saftey tips. My dog gets into everything. I think she was a mountain goat in a past life.

    My mom made a costume for my son when he was around 4. A black widow spider. His arms were the top two legs and then he had three extra sets of fake legs. Cute and creepy at the same time.

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  18. I can't imagine putting a costume on my long haired black cat (Kitty Wells Dolly Fiona ... Fi for short)! She's so prissy and independent she'd turn me into the animal abuse hot line which she has engraved on her food dish. LOVED the photos of your dogs ... and the tips.

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  19. Mountain goat in prev life? OMG,lol! Olivia, you crack me up!

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  20. Hi Shana and Amelia! Thanks so much for stopping by to say howdy!

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  21. Carolyn, I can just see your kitty dialing up the number! Cats are such wildly entertaining creatures. :)

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  22. My fav costume was one I wore as a college kid, to a Halloween party. We were supposed to come as an inanimate object (there were quite a few toilets and at least one shower stall). I wore black tights and leotard. On my breasts and between my legs I pasted those rubber insects you can buy in novelty shops - and a few fishing lures. I came as "Pandora's box."

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  23. ROTFLOL, Mary Ellen! I loooooove creative costumes! Those are truly the best, imho. ;-)

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  24. I think my best costume was the year Stars Wars came out and my dad made jawa costumes out of burlap and little red light tapes to glases we wore. It must have looked pretty convincing because we took in a lot of candy that year!

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  25. Wow, Amanda!! What a creative guy your dad is! The jawa costumes sound adorable. :)

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  26. Love your pictures, Catherine! And some great advice!

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  27. Love the little black and white puppy. SO cute. My kids still dress up but only for a few more years probably. The dogs are safe...for now.

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  28. Thank you, Kathryne, for the compliments on the pups!! I adore all four of them - the two that are mine and the two I've fostered. I'm looking forward to making them Christmas scarves soon.

    Sara, I have to confess I'm like you - no costumes for the dogs. Mine would get too frustrated with it. So I opt for the season scarves instead on special occassions. So far, they're tolerating those okay. ;-)

    Thanks, everyone, for all the fun comments! I had a blast hanging out with y'all!!

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