Ho ho ho furiends! It’s feeling very Christmassy at our house this week. We have decorated our Christmas tree (which Chio has managed to leave intact so far) and we both have our festive reindeer ears. Don’t we look handsome?
The holidays are a time for happiness and fun with friends and family. It’s also a time of food and drink excess, not to mention lots of strange new objects in the house. Some of these new objects can be highly attractive to us pets, and equally dangerous. What may seem harmless to you can be lethal to dogs, cats and other small animals. To keep your pets happy and healthy this year, follow these tips on how to safeguard your pet this holiday season.
They look wonderful in the home, but there are a few potential dangers to look out for. We can chew tinsel, confetti and Christmas wrapping paper, leading to a trip to the emergency room. Many decorations can block our intestines. Ornaments and snow globes are very attractive to pets with their glitter and sparkle. Some contain poisons and sharp objects may injure your pets intestines. Clean up any broken ornaments immediately.
Christmas Trees and Plants
It’s happened before and it will surely happen again; the water in the Christmas tree may seem like a new extra drinking bowl. Drinking this water can expose your dog to all kinds of bacteria and fertilizers. Some people also put aspirin in their water. Please do not do this if you have pets!
Christmas plants such as holly, mistletoe. lilies, pine and poinsettias are all potentially poisonous to your pets if eaten. If you do have them in the house, keep well out of reach from your four-legged friends.
Candles and Extension Cords
Puppies love to chew through things! Our friend Teddy the Cavalier chewed through the lead of a laptop within 10 seconds of his mommy opening her gift on Christmas morning. Luckily it was not plugged in.
If you are using extension cords, you can secure them by using duct tape or similar to secure them to the wall or floor. Candles are also attractive to curious pets and we can have our whiskers burnt off in seconds. There is also the danger of knocking them over and causing a fire.
If you want your pet to be part of the festive feast, make sure you are giving us foods designed for pets. Many holiday foods are fatty and too heavy for pets, causing stomach pain, vomiting and diarrhea. Although dogs love pork and bacon, it’s not a good idea to give it to us.
Caffeine - It causes heart problems and vomiting.
Grapes, including raisins - they are poisonous to pets, potentially causing kidney failure.
Chocolate - I know we beg for it, but never give this to your pets. The higher the cocoa content, the more poisonous it is.
Alcohol - Pets can’t process alcohol the way humans do. Even a small amount can make us sick and can lead to coma and even death.
When choosing a pet for your toy, make sure it’s from a reputable producer and doesn’t contain any harmful chemicals or small objects we might choke on.
Yes, I’ll admit it, we can look adorable in costumes! Costumes are fine once your pet is happy to wear them, Make sure they aren’t restricting or too tight and don’t have any bits we might bite off and choke on. If your pet is unhappy about wearing a costume, don’t force it. It will lead to anxiety.
The holidays are a great time for parties. If your pet is used to a quiet household or does not like visitors, house parties can be very stressful. Make a quiet place for your pet, away from the hustle and bustle. We have a ZenCrate set up in the bedroom so we can hide out if we feel anxious or need a break from people.
If you need to leave your pet at home to see friends and family, pay close attention to safety this time of year. Dogs with separation anxiety may feel particularly upset. Ensure that your dog is in an area that has nothing dangerous that they can chew or swallow. If possible, play calming music or set up a comforting, secure place for them to feel safe in.
Do you have any funny Christmas pet stories? We’d love to hear them! Please comment below. If you would like to keep up to date with my blog you can sign up right on this page. Find me on Facebook at Charger the Guide Dog. Share this article with your friends and family if you find it useful!