Holiday Safety Tips


Holiday Safety Tips For Your Pet

FOOD AND FOOD RELATED ITEMS Certain foods are toxic and dangerous to pets. Remember to pet proof the garbage. And pick up before going to bed so tempting items are not left out. Foods such as grapes, raisins, alcohol, meat-soaked strings from roasts or poultry, and Macadamia nuts are all potentially harmful to your pet. Never feed table scraps as fatty foods are too rich for their digestive systems. Tin foil and cellophane candy wrappers are also dangerous if swallowed.

NEVER GIVE A PET AS A CHRISTMAS GIFT A new puppy should never be given as a gift. The holidays are too noisy and stressful for a new family pet to adjust, and far too many are surrendered to shelters after the holidays due to it not working out. A better idea is to give a gift certificate from a shelter so he or she can pick out their own new pet after the holidays.

KEEP ALL HOLIDAY PLANTS OUT OF REACH Many plants are toxic or poisonous to pets. Poinsettias, holly, mistletoe and hibiscus, among others, are dangerous if ingested.

PET PROOF THE CHRISTMAS TREE Hang shiny or breakable ornaments high and out of reach. Tinsel can be dangerous if swallowed. Never decorate a tree with food items such as popcorn or gingerbread. Watch for broken glass ornaments or sharp ornament hangers. If you have a live tree, the needles and branches can be poisonous if ingested, as well as the tree water. Cover the water container with a tree skirt. You can place a screen around the tree or use scat mats to keep pets away.

WATCH THE ELECTRICAL WIRES Electrical cords and light strands can seem like good chew toys for puppies. Cover them and tack them down or use a spray such as bitter apple as a deterrent. And unplug lights when not in use.

RIBBONS AND BOWS Keep gift ribbons and bows out of reach to prevent chewing or swallowing.

COSTUMES Resist the temptation to dress your pet in cute holiday costumes, hats or ribbons. If you do, watch them closely so they don’t get tangled or injured.

VISITORS If you have visitors for the holidays consider how comfortable your dog is among crowds of people. If necessary, put your pet in a quiet room with food and water and a favorite toy, to reduce the stress.

KNOW WHERE YOUR PET IS Always keep a current ID tag on your dog at all times, especially during the holidays. Statistically, more dogs run off and get lost during the holidays due to stress or the front door being opened frequently for guests. Make it a point to pay attention to where your pet is at all times.

A little pre-planning goes a long way towards keeping your pet safe during the holiday season. Keep your vet’s phone number handy. And most of all, have a wonderful and happy season!