Holiday Pet Safety For Our Furry Family Members
The holidays are meant to be a time of celebration, family, friends, and fun! We of course want our pets to be included in the holiday cheer, but there are special considerations for holiday pet safety we need to take to keep them safe and happy through the bustle and excitement of the season. The saddest thing to have dampen holiday memories would be to lose a beloved pet to preventable toxicity or injury, so here are some things you need to be aware of to avoid a trip to the Animal Emergency Center this year!
First of all, we all know our pets don’t always understand what’s safe for them to climb on or ingest, and it is our responsibility to keep harmful objects out of reach. Here is a list of things to keep away from your pet to avoid poisoning, burns, cuts, gastritis, and intestinal blockages or perforations: glass ornaments, candles, potpourri, pine needles, ribbons, bows, tinsel, holiday plants, the garbage, alcoholic beverages, and almost all human food. For example, meat like turkey, ribs, and steak can contain bones that could block or puncture the intestines, and all of the rich food, sugary sweets, and tasty drinks we have around over the holiday season can cause everything from pancreatitis, vomiting, and diarrhea, to organ failure and death in our pets. Next, if you do have a tree in the house, it is important to keep lights, wires, and ornaments high enough that pets cannot reach them, and to secure the tree to the wall. A simple wall hook and string can prevent a Christmas tree from tipping over if your pet bumps into or tries to climb it. Also, cheap, stocking stuffer pet toys may be appealing, but they are too easy for your pet to break up and swallow, potentially causing gastrointestinal blockage or punctures. To be safe, stick to approved dental bones/chews, high protein dog treats, and puzzle toys.
Finally, a word about holiday stress. We feel it, and our pets do too! A loud and crowded get together can be overwhelming and even frightening for a pet that is used to just your family and a normally peaceful home. Plus, guests who have imbibed generously can be far less observant when it comes to stepping carefully near a pet on the floor. Be sure to set your pet up with a comfy hideaway in a spare room or an offset area where they can find peace and quiet. Finally, although it is a cute idea for a holiday gift, be strong and hold off on giving a pet as a present. New pets need a stable environment to adapt to, so the hustle and bustle of the holidays is the wrong time to bring in a new furry family member. Instead, wrap and give some pet supplies, and let the lucky recipient know they have a special pet reserved to come join their family in January!
Happy Holidays, from all of us at Fairgrounds Animal Hospital!