Lock up your kids and pets now! It's the only way they will survive October.

We had the great conker debate a few years ago where we were given dire warnings that playing conkers was a health and safety hazard and would be all fun and games until someone lost an eye.

The fact that children and adults have provably played conkers, if not since the first horse chestnut tree, then at least since the invention of string, meant nothing.

As a novice at the game, I can tell you that the worst that ever happened was a sharp crack on the knuckles when the conker went awry!

Now there is another risk, as this press release on our desks this week showed.

"With the arrival of October, autumn is upon us! It’s the season for muddy woodland walks and enjoying the delights this time of year has to offer," it said.

"The trees will shed, and you’ll find yourself kicking through piles of crunchy golden leaves on walks. Tree seeds will also ripen and fall, and you’ll find heaps of acorns and shiny conkers on the ground."

So far it sounds glorious, but wait:

PDSA Vet Lynne James says: “Acorns and conkers perfectly signify the seasons changing, and whilst we may enjoy collecting or playing with them, don’t forget that they can be a danger for our pets if they’re swallowed.

“Thankfully, the bitter taste stops most pets eating them, however they can be tempting to play with and some owners enjoy throwing conkers for pets to catch without realising the risks.

“They can easily swallow them, causing tummy upsets or even a potentially life-threatening blockage of their throat or intestines. Not forgetting they do also contain toxins, which can be harmful to pets."

And we haven't even got onto Halloween.

Did you know that picking your own pumpkins can be a health hazard?

In recent years, according to another dire press release this week, a growing number of landowners have diversified into PYO pumpkins to capitalise on the family Halloween market.

With dark evenings and muddy fields, there is a definite slip hazard.

And forget Halloween itself where kids are going to be knocked over in the street, get burns from inflammable costumes and choked on sweets. Enjoy it all... if you dare!