Friday, December 23, 2011

Ho-Ho-Holiday Pet Safety Tips

It's that most wonderful time of year when...   There'll be much mistletoeing, and hearts will be glowing, when love ones are neaaaaar! 

But what may bring us holiday cheer can also be dangerous for pets. So while you're preparing to roast chestnuts on an open fire, consider these holiday safety tips from VCA Animal Hospitals.

Cosmo Havanese and Santa
Protect and cover all prepared and uncooked foods, especially uncooked dough which can expand and cause severe stomach pain in your pet.

Every pet parent should know: keep all plants (especially poinsettias, peace lilies and mistletoe) out of your pet’s reach.

Tasty treats are very tempting for dogs and cats, so try to keep them out of reach and most certainly off the ground when you are unwrapping gifts.

Hanging lights and ornaments can be inviting to extra playful pets, but they can also be dangerous. Be sure to keep all decorations out of a pet’s reach.

Opening presents is fun, but it’s best for pets to stay away from all ribbons, wrapping paper and “linear foreign bodies” to avoid accidental ingestion and internal complications.

Left by themselves, pets may get into holiday food that can be potentially dangerous to their health. Foods with grapes, raisins and macadamia nuts can cause problems ranging from digestive upset to possible organ failure.

If you haven’t been warned already: keep all chocolate out of your pet’s reach! There are toxins present in chocolate which can cause problems ranging from mild digestive upset to seizures and can even be fatal. For more details about the hazards of chocolate, see this article on "Chocolate Poisoning".

Dinners around the holidays are all about sharing. Although you may want to share with your pets, try to keep in mind that sudden rich diet changes are likely to upset a pet's stomach. If you wish to feed your pet a special treat, give only a small amount of table food mixed in with their regular dinner.

Any cords you may have near the floor can be a real danger to your cat. Their sharp teeth can easily puncture electrical wires.

You should try to keep your pets out of the kitchen during the hustle and bustle of the season, as to avoid them getting burned or otherwise injured.

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