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Safety tips for your pet during the holidays

Forum: Pet Owners and Animal Lovers


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December 6th, 2007, 10:13 AM
Sabina's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Canada
Posts: 4,657
I had my dog in at the vets for surgery a couple of years ago over the Christmas holidays and I couldn't believe all the dogs there that had ingested a christmas ordiments. Please be careful over the holidays. Here are some helpful tips I found and wanted to share.

Xmas treats

They're everywhere at Christmas and you may be tempted to leave them out in the open for everyone to sample. But don't let your pets get near them. In addition to extra sugar they don't need, chocolate contains a substance called theobromine that can be lethal to dogs, cats, and even ferrets. Symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, increased thirst and urination are typical signs your pet may have ingested some of the normally tasty substance. And it can also affect their heart rates. So keep the candy somewhere out of reach where you're sure they can't get to it.

Don't drink to this

Alcohol is a great social lubricator for you. Animals don't need it. But many will sample it, especially if it tastes sweet or is mixed with something else. Pets can get very sick very fast from your booze and can even go into a coma or suffer death from respiratory failure.

Plant life - and death

It's the time of year when poinsettias and other Christmas floral arrangements make their way into your home. But what's pretty for your house can be deadly for dogs and cats. The red flowers won't kill an animal if they're ingested and they're actually low in toxicity. But they can cause vomiting or nausea if ingested.

The real hazards are much smaller and much more likely to be ignored by those who put them up. Swallowed mistletoe can create gastrointestinal and heart troubles in both canines and felines. And holly berries are especially toxic to pets. But they'll eat anything, so it's important to keep them away from the temptations. One solution: consider silk or plastic flowers this year as a safer alternative. Not only will your friend be better off but you can use them again next year.

'Tis the Tree-son

You already know what dogs do near trees. But that should be the least of your worries. There are a host of hazards waiting in the green visitor in your home and pets are more than willing to explore them all unless you keep an eye on them.

Real trees are often placed in water to keep them fresh. But that liquid can become stagnant and filled with bacteria over time and your dog or cat might think it's something to drink. The results can make them sick.

You may have decked the halls - and your fir - with ribbons and tinsel. They're often irresistible toys to cats, but can lodge in their stomachs if eaten, creating problems that are anything but pretty.

Lights are nice to look at, but all pets really care about is the cords used to plug them in. They can suffer electric shocks if they chew on them, so keep these secure and keep them away from the danger.

Getting in and out

It's a peril of a different kind that you may not think about. The holidays are often filled with parties and lots of visitors, and if your dog is like most, he or she can't wait to see the new arrivals. But all those comings and goings create an excellent opportunity for your pet to escape out of an open front door. Take extra care about Fido or Fluffy's whereabouts, especially when a lot of people are coming over. Many indoor pets don't have any street sense and cars zooming along a busy street can be a ticket to disaster once they're out running loose alone.

Presents of mind

So you've bought the kids all the toys they want and they're sitting under the tree. Dogs and cats are especially curious creatures and won't think anything of nosing their way into the packages long before December 25th. Many playthings contain small parts that are tempting to chew on and can pose serious choking hazards for your best friends.

Thank you Jaidynsmum for the beautiful siggy
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December 6th, 2007, 04:24 PM
Posts: n/a
Thanks for posting that. I have denied my family the pleasure of a Christmas tree simply for the fact that my cat (like all cats and a lot of dogs) is waaay too curious. They are pretty and fun but the safety of my cute little fatty is much more important. I sure hope every other pet owner feels that way.
Thanks again! See you on the PAL board
P.s. I have been meaning to ask you forever about your dog Zack. That picture is too cute, what kind of dog is he?
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