The costumes are back in the closet and the candy is just starting to dwindle. Houses and stores alike will glow with warmth and cheer. The Holidays are here! However, all that decorating could upset your pet in more ways then one. Any change in environment is stressful for dogs and cats. Simply remember these common Holiday Hazards and keep your pet safe through the turkeys, presents and confetti.
Be sure to keep your pet’s space a constant for them. Have a place, such as a kennel or back room, where they can go away from the decorations and In-Laws. This area should be free of holiday plants, decorations and foods which if ingested could be harmful. Keeping a live Christmas tree is a wonderful tradition; however, the water basin could be a temptation for your pet. The preservatives or stagnant water at the base of your tree are very harmful if ingested. Likewise, ornaments tinsel and garland could all pose gastrointestinal issues. Careful supervision around the holiday decorations is necessary when it comes to the safety of your pet.
Sharing the joy of the holidays with your pet is very tempting. However, keeping your pet’s diet regular throughout this stressful time is important for their health. Foods like chocolate, candy, rich food and certain nuts can cause serious health issues. In addition, poultry bones are very brittle and could splinter when eaten by a dog. Other common foods to avoid are grapes and raisins. These fruits are tasty to humans but poison to dogs. Acute Kidney failure could occur. Overall, keep the holiday cheer on your own plate and only share holiday treats specifically meant for dogs with your pet. They will thank you with just as much enthusiasm.
The temperatures are falling and this brings on a whole new set of pet related precautions. Chemicals like antifreeze and rock salt should be kept well away from your pet. Antifreeze is strong and lethal for your pet. Keep it in closed containers away from the reach of your pet and children. A veterinarian should be consulted immediately if ingestion occurs. Salt can also irritate your pet’s health. Skin irritation is highly probable and if ingested it could be lethal. Wipe off any exposure to salt from your dogs coat and skin, or keep them away from it.
Keeping your pet inside more can be frustrating, but watching out for their health is your job. Dogs cannot communicate to you how cold they are so lengthened exposure could put your pet at risk. A short haired or clipped dog should be clothed. Dry off the footpads and belly of your dog when they return from a romp in the snow or a walk in wet weather conditions. This will help warm them up and remove any harmful salt or ice.
You and your pet should enjoy the holidays. Give them holiday related pet friendly treats. Keep the decorations pet friendly and give them a place to de-stress from it all. Play with them in-doors and remember to keep them salt and chemical free. Following these steps will lead to a bright and Happy New Year with many more holiday seasons to enjoy.