During the holiday season it’s easy to get caught up in the celebration when it comes to decorating your home. If you’re a pet owner, don’t forget to take certain safety precautions to ensure the safety of your animals. Keep these holiday pet hazards in mind to save yourself a trip to the vet!
Christmas trees are a classic holiday favorite for pets and people alike. However, if pets are able to drink from the tree stand, it can be dangerous. Common, store-bought tree preservatives, or even sugar water, can become a lively home for harmful bacteria. If ingested these bacteria can cause vomiting or diarrhea. Remember to use caution when decorating the tree as well, as tinsel and lights can both harm your pet if chewed or swallowed. Try using a gate to keep your animals away from the tree, and ensure there is always fresh water available elsewhere.
Potpourri brings out the most joyous scents of the season! However, pet owners should be cautious when putting it around the house, since it may be attractive to cats. If consumed, dry potpourri may cause an upset stomach while liquid forms can burn the inside of the mouth and esophagus. Be sure to keep any form of it out of the reach of your pets, just to be safe!
Festive plants may be a staple of the holidays but pets should steer clear. While poinsettias have a bad reputation for making animals sick, the plant will actually not cause more than an upset stomach. But extreme caution should be used around lilies, which can cause kidney failure or be fatal to pets if consumed.
Holiday dinners are great for sharing the seasonal spirit, but not for sharing table scraps. Take extra care in keeping your pets away from fruitcake, chocolate, and alcohol. Fruitcake may contain grapes, raisins, or currants, which are all toxic to pets. Rum-soaked varieties can cause other issues, like severe drops in blood pressure or body temperature. It’s best to let your dog or cat stick to their regular diet, no matter how much they beg.
Enjoy the holidays with your pets, and stay aware of these potential dangers to keep every family member safe!