The holiday season is coming to its culmination at Christmas! Merriment and cheer is in abundance, our houses are brightly lit and inviting, and joy and good will to our fellow man is abundant. However, it is oftentimes in this merriment that we forget the hazards that the holidays present to our beloved pets. This year, have some good will to your fellow man as well as your fellow pet by being aware of the dangers lurking during the holiday season.
Trees and Plants
Another thing to be wary of during the holidays is plants around your home that could be harmful to your pets. The biggest contributor to this would be your centerpiece, the Christmas tree. Pine needles can be a danger to your pets if eaten. The needles can be toxic if consumed. Also, be mindful of other plants placed throughout the house. Lilies can be fatal to a cat if eaten; poinsettias, mistletoe, and holly all have toxic effects if eaten by your pets. Be mindful this holiday season of where you put your plants and always make sure that they stay well clear of your pets.
Although consuming plants is of major concern, it is not the only hazard a tree provides. Curious cats and rambunctious dogs are likely candidates for tipping a Christmas tree. Be sure to securely anchor your tree to avoid it falling down on an unwary pet. Also, for anyone with a live tree, make sure not to let your pet drink from the water in the base, as added fertilizers and plant growth solutions can make this harmful to your pet. Altogether, keep your furry friends away from your tree to help prevent holiday accidents.
Lights and Ornaments
For any cat owner, they know the allure that shiny objects can provide for their fuzzy friend. Ornaments, tinsel, and other household decorations colored in bright and shiny silver and gold can capture the attention of any feline. Unfortunately, these objects sometimes mean danger for your pet. Broken ornaments leave sharp shards on the floor that can be harmful to your pet’s feet. Ingested decorations or tinsel can cause blockages resulting in surgery to remove the pieces.
Christmas lights provide beautiful ambience to any home during the holiday season and look great both inside and out. However, as with shiny ornaments, many pets are attracted to the lights, unaware of the danger they pose. Pets can tangle themselves up in the lights which then provides the risk of the tree coming down or worse, strangulation. Dogs and cats can chew through wires and electrocute themselves. Make sure to keep any lights well out of reach of your pets. In addition, candles and other open flames can be a danger. Nimble cats may knock down a candle or burn themselves while seeking warmth. Be sure to keep candles out of reach of pets and always be sure to extinguish flames when leaving the room.
Finally, people food is no good for your pets during the holiday season. Certain seemingly harmless foods can actually be quite toxic to your dog or cat. Small bones and other stiff pieces of meat can lodge themselves in your pet’s throat and choke them. Be wary of what you give your pets; in short, let the people have the people food and the pets have the pet food.
The holiday season is a happy time to spend with family, friends, and pets. Don’t let your holiday sour with an avoidable accident. Make sure your pets stay safe this holiday.