We know you wants your furry “children” to have the best holiday season possible! With the holiday season coming up, many people include their four legged family in activities. As you prepare for the holidays, it is important to try to keep your pet’s life style and habits (especially diet and exercise) routine as possible. But it is also important to know what some of the hidden dangers are.
What threats are there to my dog or cat?
Each year, Adams County Animal Hospital sees a several dogs and cats that have become ill. Most of the patients seen have ingested something they should not have during the holidays. There are many dangers, hidden and obvious, during this time of the year. Safety proofing the house, inside and out, will help protect your pet. Seasonal plants, decorations, food, cords, candles, and unknowing guests can all contribute to the hidden dangers to your dog and/or cat.
Why are holiday decorations a threat to my pet?
Take care with seasonal plants and decorations. Make sure Christmas trees and other holiday decorations are secure and cannot be knocked over. Certain decorations can cause internal harm. Tinsel, string, ribbon and other small decorations that may be swallowed may cause bowel obstructions if a pet eats them. Christmas lights and cords may also cause electrical burns and death if a pet chews on it. Holiday plants such as Mistletoe and Holly can cause intestinal upset and heart problems if ingested. Candles are also another holiday risk. Cats that get up on furniture and counters where candles are, may get their tails to close and catch them on fire and spread the fire to the rest of the home. Candles also have the risk of being knocked over by dogs and cats.
Kitchen Dangers to Pets?
Most of us like to treat our pets to something special during the holidays. But many items found in the kitchen are very harmful to our pets. Here is a list of things that pets cannot have:
- Fatty foods
- Grapes and raisins
These foods can cause serious and even fatal health risks. If your pet ingests any of these, please contact your veterinarian staff immediately.
What if I have company over?
If you are having guests, take a moment to go over a few safety rules, even if they are over just for dinner. Setting boundaries and a safe place for your pet to go will help make sure everyone has a happy and healthy holiday season. Here are some tips on items to address with guests:
- Ask them not to give your pet anything that is not approved by you, especially human food.
- Keep trash and left overs picked up.
- Make sure everyone knows if a pet can go outside or if they are a indoor pet only. Some smaller pets may need supervision outside.
- Keep medications and other personal items picked up and out of reach.