The holiday season is a joyful and merry time with friends and two- and four-legged family members. The following holiday safety tips will help make the holidays safe for your furry family members and enjoyable for all.
Make sure your tree is secure and can’t be tipped over by playful or curious pets. Placing it in an off-limits room or gating it off is helpful. Make sure ornaments that could be mistaken for chew toys, fragile ornaments, and those with sentimental value are hung close to the top of the tree so they’re not tempting. Christmas tree water additives can be potentially hazardous to your pets. Some contain antifreeze, and the old wives tales about adding aspirin or sugar to your tree water to keep your tree fresh are not only false but they can cause serious harm to your pet.
Holly, mistletoe, poinsettias, and some lilies are poisonous. They should be kept in areas where your pet can’t get to them at all. If you think your pet has ingested any amount of these plants—call your veterinarian for immediate help. Candles and exposed wires may be attractive to your pet as items to play with. Make sure they are hidden or kept in pet friendly areas. Tinsel and strings are fun for cats to play with but they are also very dangerous. If ingested they can get tangled up in the intestines and cause blockages.
Eating and treats are part of the holidays. While it’s OK for your pet to safely join in the edible festivities—make sure they don’t ingest certain toxic foods. Chocolate and candies can contain harmful chemicals that are toxic to pets. Avoid turkey and chickens bones for your pets as they are small and sharp and can cause harm while being eaten and also once they are in the intestines. High fat and spicy foods can cause intestinal discomfort, bloating, diarrhea, vomiting, and, in some cases, pancreatitis.
If you want to give your pet a special holiday treat offer them plain green beans and carrots, turkey or chicken with no seasoning, or other bland foods. Make sure to limit the amount and ensure they don’t overeat. If your pet has free access to the house when you’re away—be sure to take out the trash or lock it away removing any temptation.
Enjoy the holidays with your beloved pets in a safe and pet-friendly way.