It’s The Most Wonderful Time of the YearThis may be the most wonderful of the year; however it can also be some ofthe most dangerous to our beloved pets. From deliciously rich holiday treats to enticing shiny decorations, the holiday season brings plenty of risks and temptations for our pets. Even the most vigilant of owners can become distracted with the extra responsibilities of additional people coming and going during this season. Even though we love seeing your pets, we want to avoid making an emergency visit to a veterinarian part of your holiday festivities. Follow our advice to help keep your pets safe this holiday season.
Holiday TreatsFestive event mean delicious edible treats – and lots of them. Unfortunately for our pets, a number of the most popular holiday goodies can be extremely toxic and fatal. Chocolate and coffee are among the worst culprits. Depending on the amount ingested they can cause signs of vomiting and diarrhea or hyperactivity, heart arrhythmias and seizures.
Guests & Holiday FoodsAs friends and family inundate our homes, some may feel the desire to sharethese holiday meals with your pets. Feeding rich holiday foods can very quicklylead to a trip to the hospital. Fatty foods lead to pancreatitis, a painful andpotentially life-threatening condition. Furthermore, guests may feel that givingleftover bones is not harmful but this certainly is not the case. Apart from being achoking hazard, bones can shatter, splinter and perforate the intestines or causeintestinal blockage. Educating visitors about the detrimental health issues thatfeeding table scraps can help minimize these risks. In addition, providing themwith pet friendly snacks can reduce all potential scenarios listed above.
Christmas Tree & DecorationsA bountiful Christmas tree is always a pleasant sight and an integral part of myChristmas. However, they can pose a danger to our fury little friends. Firstly,mischievous cats loving playing in and around Christmas trees. Securing your treeto the ceiling using a fishing line can prevent it and kitty from coming crashingdown. Ornaments and tinsel often adorn our Christmas trees and can becomeprime candidates for causing lacerations or foreign bodies. Place glass, aluminum,and paper ornaments higher up on the tree to avoid accidental ingestion.It’s not just what’s on the tree that can pose an issue. Be mindful of what isplaced underneath your tree as well. Just because wrapping paper keeps presentsa mystery to us, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it will to our pets. Cats and dogshave very keen sense of smell. Depending on the breed, their sense of smell is 1,000 to 10,000,000 times more sensitive than ours. Therefore, they are quite adept at seeking out that decadent box of chocolates.
Holiday PlantsHoliday plants, milestone, lilies, poinsetias, amaryllis and holly, are hiddendangers that we don’t commonly think of. These plants may get you into the holiday spirits but they can be toxic to pets. If you suspect ingested a poisonous plant, call your local veterinarian or the clinicASPCA’sPetPoisonControlHotline
Other AnimalsDo you have a brother-in-law that is diffcult to handle? An aunt that is hard tolisten to after a couple of wobbly-pops? There are families that fight like cats anddogs, so is it any surprise that forcing pets to interact together can also be acontentious experience? Take caution when introducing new pets to each other.Consider separating pets in closed rooms before leaving them at hometogether.Preparedness is the key to a successful holiday season. Understanding the risksthat come with the festivities is the first step. Remember to be conscious offriends, family, loved-ones as well as our furry little friends. From all of us at Townand Country Animal Hospital, we wish you Happy Holidays and a Happy NewYear!Dr. Brendon Laing
Dec 23 2015