‘Tis the season to be jolly, but keep your pets away from holly. With proper care, you can ring in the holiday season and keep your pet from harm.
Prevent Pet Injuries
- Be sure your Christmas tree is securely anchored so it can’t fall over on your pets.
- Keep those little lights from twinkling around pets, especially unattended candles. Pets may burn themselves on open flame or hot wax, and they could start a fire.
There are many decorative elements that can cause injury, such as tinsel, wires, batteries and glass/plastic ornaments. Pets may ingest tinsel or pieces of decorations, causing tummy troubles. Batteries and wires can also shock or burn a pet’s mouth.
Prevent Pet Poisoning
Follow these important steps in order to avoid potential pet poisoning situations:
- Avoid decorating with holly or mistletoe, which can cause tummy and cardiovascular problems. Jerusalem cherry bushes may produce beautiful berries, but they can poison pets as well. Many lilies can cause kidney failure in cats. Poinsettias are mildly toxic as well.
- Keep cats and dogs out of your live Christmas tree water basin. This stagnant water can be a breeding ground for dangerous bacteria, as well as tree fertilizers.
- Keep alcoholic beverages away from pets’ reach, and Uncle Ralph as well while you’re at it.
- Skip the special people food treats. You’ll also want to keep pets away from leftovers, garbage cans and unattended plates of food. Fatty foods can cause pancreatitis, and bones can cause stomach perforation and constipation. Sugar-free goodies may contain xylitol, which can cause vomiting, lethargy, seizures and liver failure in dogs. Chocolate can cause tummy issues, seizures and death in dogs. Grapes and raisins are also poisonous to dogs and cats.
- Be sure house guests keep medications zipped up and packed away so pets can’t get to them.
- Some imported snow globes have been found to contain ethylene glycol (antifreeze), which can be fatal to your pet.
- Cats in particular may be curious about liquid potpourri. Simmering potpourri can cause burns, breathing difficulty and liver issues.
Keep Pets Relaxed
- Holidays bring extra house guests that can stress your pets. Be sure to give pets their own quiet space to escape the hustle and bustle.
- Be sure your dog is in a secure place if there will be loud noises, such as fireworks or popper toys.
Be prepared just in case the holidays are not so nice to your pet. Program Avery Creek Pet Hospital’s number into your phones (828-651 8868), as well as ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control’s hotline: (888) 426-4435.