The holidays are jam packed with fun activities, family, and festive decorations! While these times are great fun for us humanoids, they can be dangerous for our pet family. Check out these tips to keep your pet safe this season:
Whatever holiday is being celebrated (Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Christmas, or New Year’s) we love to decorate! Unfortunately, all the new things we bring into our homes can be dangerous for Fido and Fluffy. Often these new items are potential toys to our furry friends. Chewing on them can cause mouth lacerations, while eating them can cause digestive blockages. Both likely resulting in a trip to the emergency vet. Block off new and interesting decorations from your pet family or consider decorating in a room that can be closed off when you are not able to monitor your pet’s activities. Some specific dangers to pay particular attention to include:
Confetti from New Year’s celebrations can cause intestinal blockage if eaten by your pet.
Christmas Tree water from pines, spruces and firs often contains pesticide residue. The sap in some trees is also toxic to pets. Make sure they can not access the tree’s water reservoir.
Pets will often investigate your Christmas Tree. Ensure that it is well supported by the stand and tie the top to a hook in the ceiling with fishing line to prevent it from falling during your fur family’s explorations. Check that the bolts in the base are tight every few days as they can loosen over time.
Tinsel is especially tempting to pets. Eating tinsel can lead to intestinal problems including blockages.
Many plants are poisonous to pets. Avoid placing holly, mistletoe, and poinsettias where pets can chew on them.
Lights pose a problem if pets chew on them or their cords. They can also become tangled in them and potentially be strangled. Make sure they are not accessible to your pet.
We often exchange gifts with family, friends, and neighbors at this time of year. Keep these out of reach of your pets until you know what is in them. It would be a real bummer if Fido at that fancy chocolate you didn’t even know was there and had to be rushed to the vet! By keeping presents in a location inaccessible to your pet until it is time to open them, you’ll ensure that you got the chocolate, not Fido!
Your furry friend is likely interested in tasting the delicious food surrounding them. Be aware some of it is very poisonous to them! Be especially aware or grapes, raisins, chocolate, and alcohol. Left over bones from your meal should not be shared with your pet. They splinter as your pet chews them and can cause cuts in the mouth and lacerations to their intestines as they travel though the digestive track.
Food bags should not be left alone with pets as they may stick their head inside to eat the leftovers or simply lick the residue. This can lead to suffocation in just minutes as the bag suctions onto their head.
While many pets enjoy the extra company and noise that comes with the season, some do not. And some pets that are normally very social could become overwhelmed. If your pet is showing signs of stress or acting oddly provide them with a break in a room away from the noise and stimulation. The last thing anyone wants is to need to doctor a bite to a family member or friend.
The Holiday Season is a time filled with joy and excitement for many of us. Make sure to keep your beloved pets safe during this time by following the advice above!
Additional information can be found at:
Pet MD “10 Pet Safety Tips for the Holidays”
ASPCA “Holiday Safety Tips”
Dog Time “6 Helpful Christmas Safety Tips for Pet Owners”
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