So the holidays are getting into full swing as we all know and while this time of the year can be lots of fun, it also brings with it some potential hazards for our dog and cat companions. Here are some of the major Holiday Pet Don’ts to watch out for this holiday season!
- People food and table scraps can cause some serious gastrointestinal issues for our dogs and cats. Avoid sharing your turkey, ham, stuffing, etc. with your pets. While they might enjoy them, many animals can get upset stomachs or even pancreatitis which can land them in the hospital or even be fatal! Make sure to put all of your trash in cans/bins that your pets can’t get into!
- Plants such as poinsettias and lilies are toxic to animals and should be placed out of their reach. Poinsettias cause gastric upset and often result in vomiting and irritation to the mouth. Lilies can be fatal to animals especially cats if ingested. They can cause kidney failure with ingestion of only small amounts. Never hesitate to contact your veterinarian if you suspect your pets of eating any plant.
- Holiday decorations and gift wraps while beautiful to look at can pose a serious risk to our pets. You may want to secure you Christmas tree especially if you have cats. Many cats (and dogs!) will try to climb trees or pull on ornaments that can result in trees falling over and possibly injuring your pet and damaging your home. Tinsel can be very irritating and possibly fatal if ingested by your pets. This is one decoration I skip these days in my house and recommend you just avoid all together! Electrical cords can be chewed by pets so try to keep these inaccessible to your animals. Lastly those beautiful ribbons and bows that decorate our packages are often very appealing to your cats to eat! These can result in intestinal obstructions that can be life threatening and require surgery. Consider not using ribbons or if you do put those packages under the tree just before opening and throw the ribbons away right away.
- Lastly many of those great treats that we love to eat at the holidays can be toxic to our pets. CHOCOLATE is probably the most ingested toxin we see during the holiday season. Depending on the type and amount of chocolate ingested signs can range from diarrhea to increased heart rate or even death. Don’t leave chocolate within reach of your pets and don’t put your wrapped chocolate gifts under the tree until your ready to open them. Dogs just can’t resist opening these regardless of who they are for! Alcohol, onion and garlic, and raisins and grapes are all toxic to animals too. These items can result in some pretty serious problems such as kidney failure or damage to the red blood cells. If your pets eat any of these or you suspect they do contact your local veterinarian or veterinary emergency hospital right away.
Remember if you have any problems or concerns with your pet this holiday season contact your veterinarian. Hope your holidays are safe and happy!