The question every veterinarian wishes they were asked before Christmas. How can I make my pet safe during the holidays?
Nothing can spoil holiday cheer like an emergency visit to a veterinary clinic. After operating Veterinary Urgent care for six years here are my Holiday Safety Tips for your Pets:
- Keep people food out of the reach of your pet, and ask your Uncle Eddy to do the same. We consume a lot of food during the Christmas holidays, and our pets have to watch. Do not feed your pet table food but have a few healthy pet treats available instead.
- Keep food away from the edge of the counters. Christmas is training time for counter surfers. Our dog, who does not get human food, unless Uncle Eddy stops over, grabbed a whole pizza off of the counter last week. (Confessions of a veterinarian). It was my fault; I left the pizza close to the edge. And sure enough, when I was not paying attention, she ate the whole thing. Eating a pizza was dangerous and could cause pancreatitis. Thankfully she is ok, but she was sluggish for a day or two.
- Keep your pet away from human treats, especially those containing chocolate, xylitol, grapes/raisins, onions or other toxic foods.
- Turkey and Turkey skin can cause pancreatitis even in small amounts.
- Yeast dough can cause painful gas and dangerous bloating
- Do not leave your pet alone with lit candles, decorated trees or potpourri
- Keep Christmas plants (especially holly, mistletoe, and lilies) out of reach of pets.
- Leave the tinsel off your tree if you have a cat. Tinsel can cut the inside of a cat’s intestine.
- Lockdown your Christmas tree to keep it from falling over if your dog bumps it or your cat climbs it.
- Hanging lemon-scented car air fresheners in the tree may deter your cat from climbing it.
- Please provide a safe place for your pet to escape the excitement (such as a kennel, crate, perching place, scratching post shelf or hiding place) if you are entertaining.