Halloween used to be one of my favorite holidays. I loved to trick-or-treat when I was a child and loved costume parties as a young adult. When I became a pet owner, Halloween became more of a challenge, especially when greeting trick-or-treaters at the door.

Halloween used to be one of my favorite holidays. I loved to trick-or-treat when I was a child and loved costume parties as a young adult. When I became a pet owner, Halloween became more of a challenge, especially when greeting trick-or-treaters at the door.

My first pet, a cock-a-poo named Benji, was afraid of trick-or-treaters, so was my shepherd, Meggie. My Joni, a shepherd border collie mix, was simply curious about them. My eyes were opened one Halloween night when greeting a tiny, princess at my door. She boldly walked up to Meggie to pet her and Meggie shied away from her. The adult with the princess thankfully pulled her back. After that I became more aware of what could happen when mixing pets with children in costume.

Animals must think humans are completely crazy during certain times of the year. Why? Well consider dressing up as a bunny at Easter, shooting fireworks on July Fourth, the costumes and crazy decorations during Halloween, and bringing a tree into the house at Christmas time. Holidays and our customs can be frightening and stressful for the animals in the household.

It is a good idea to put animals in a safe area during Halloween. Keeping them away from the constant flow of trick-or-treaters at the door might be the best bet, as a pet could get scared and bite a child out of fear. Candy needs to be kept up where pets can’t get into the treat bowl. Please don’t give candy to a pet as a treat. Candy has ingredients in it that can make a pet very sick and sometimes even kill it.

Pets should not be allowed to roam loose, especially during Halloween. Pets that one keeps outside should be brought inside and put in a safe place. There are evil people in this world who enjoy hurting animals who are left in vulnerable positions. Black cats have especially been known to be targeted at Halloween.

Halloween is a fun time for children and adults. While you’re enjoying the parties and the treats, please think of your pets. For their sake, please bring your pets inside and keep them safe.

The following animals are available for adoption at the Independence Animal Shelter. Visit the shelter at 875 Vista Ave. or call 325-7207 for more information. If you have an animal control problem, call 325-7205.

17322305 female shepherd mix, 5 years. 17326462 male Labrador/Chow mix, 2 years. 17351980 female shepherd mix, 3 years. 17356386 female Jack Russell mix, 2 years. 17435647 female Boxer/retriever mix, 4 years. 17442395 male Labrador mix, 2 months. 17450735 female German Shepherd mix, 1 year. 17455384 female shepherd mix, 1 year. 17457373 female shepherd mix, 4 years. 17490380 male American Eskimo mix, neutered, 6 years. 17137442 male cat, shorthair, orange, 5 years. 17118768 male cat, medium hair, black, neutered, 2 months. 17118772 male cat, shorthair, brown, neutered, 2 months. 17134806 female cat, shorthair, black, 3 months. 17202299 female cat, medium hair, orange/black, spayed, 2 years. 17237046 female cat, medium hair, black/orange, spayed, 3 years. 17237935 female cat, medium hair, cream, spayed, 3 years. 17277159 male cat, shorthair, black, neutered, 6 months. 17296334 male cat, shorthair, orange/white, 1 year. 17238950 female cast, shorthair, black/bronze, 3 years.

There are 26 dogs, and 90 cats and kittens available for adoption.