Your Veterinary Clinic Blog
Celebrating the holidays with your pet is a wonderful gift. However, these celebrations can pose some potential risks to your pet’s health. Here are a few things you should keep in mind to help keep your pet safe this holiday season.
While holiday decorations are certainly beautiful, some decorations can be troublesome for your pet. One of the most common issues is pets consuming objects or materials that they shouldn’t. From sparkly tinsel to shiny ornaments, your pet may try to chew or swallow your holiday decorations. Not only can this cause digestive issues, but it can also be a choking hazard. Monitor your pet closely and try to keep decorations out of reach if possible.
If you are putting up a Christmas tree, there are some additional hazards you should be aware of. Cats frequently see Christmas trees as an exciting new object to climb. While you should discourage your pet from climbing the tree, it is always a good idea to make sure the tree is adequately secured just in case. This way, the tree won’t come toppling down in the event of a rogue tree climbing adventure.
If you are celebrating with a live tree, make sure you keep your pet from drinking the water out of the tree base. Tree water can contain fertilizer and bacteria that can be harmful to your pet. Also, be aware that other holiday plants like mistletoe and holly are dangerous and should be avoided.
As you celebrate the holidays, there will likely be plenty of tasty treats around your home. Unfortunately, many of these treats can be toxic to your pet. Some of the most common toxic foods include chocolate, raisins, grapes, onions, and garlic. Additionally, many sugar-free candies and baked goods contain an ingredient known as xylitol. Even small amounts of xylitol can be hazardous.
Try to keep tasty treats out of your pet’s reach and never leave food unattended. Remind your guests of your food rules and provide pet-friendly treats instead. If you are unsure if your pet has eaten something toxic, it is always best to give us a call or contact the Pet Poison Helpline.
Holiday Party Problems
Before you have your family and friends over for a holiday gathering, you should consider the impact a holiday party can have on your pet. Many pets experience anxiety with large groups of people in their homes. Creating a safe space where your pet can retreat from strangers can help reduce some of their stress. This space can be a quiet bedroom or another closed-off area of the house.
Creating a safe space can also help protect your pet from other dangers. With many people coming and going, doors are sometimes left open, and there may be more opportunities for your pet to escape. Try to keep your pet away from the door when people are coming and going. Also, ensure all doors are properly closed before letting your pet loose in the house.
We hope you enjoy this wonderful time of year with the ones you love. Keeping your furry friends safe will ensure a joyous time is had by all!