Keeping your pets safe during the festive season

December 20th, 2016

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The holiday season is almost here, with everyone gearing up for some time off with friends and family. As we finish off our Christmas shopping and prepare for visitors or travelling, it is important to keep our pet’s health and safety in mind. This time of year can be very exciting, however it can often be uncomfortable and unsettling for our four legged friends as their environment is changed and more and more people come to visit.

There is an increased risk of illness or injury around Christmas time with all the decorations, presents and food, however it is important to keep a somewhat normal routine for your pets such as exercise and eating so they can still feel comfortable. Here are some helpful tips to keep your pets safe during this festive season.

Christmas decorations are a must have if you celebrate Christmas, although they can also become very hazardous if not set up correctly around your four legged friend. Low hanging lights, ornaments and tinsel for your Christmas tree can be huge dangers to your pet as they can often be seen as treats and cause serious intestinal blockages. It’s best to keep the decorations out of reach from your pets or use ornaments that will be too big for them to swallow.

Some decorations require electricity for them to show off their full potential. It is important to keep the power leads to these decorations taped to either the ground or the wall to prevent your cat or dog chewing on them and causing themselves serious harm.

Seasonal plants such as Mistletoe and Holly can cause a range of symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea and nausea when ingested. A real Christmas tree can also cause problems with pets ingesting pine needles and causing implications in their intestines. If you can’t stop your pet from ingesting these plants, an artificial alternative may be a better option for your household.

Quick tips:

  • Clean up quickly after unwrapping presents to avoid paper or ribbon to be swallowed by your pet
  • If you’re expecting visitors, exercise your dog beforehand so they are calmer and less energetic around your guests
  • Create a room where your pet can escape from the crowd and relax by themselves
  • Lollies and Christmas treats are not for dogs and are often toxic which can cause sickness or serious health problems
  • Keep an eye on your pet escaping through the front door as guests arrive

Leftovers from Christmas lunch and dinner can be a Boxing Day delight, however they can also be harmful to your pets. These are often rich, fatty foods that more often than not upset your pets stomach and can ultimately lead to inflammation, vomiting and serious internal issues. Cooked bones are also a big no-no for pets as they can splinter easily in your pet’s throat or intestines. Feed your dog before you eat and make sure you have a packet of special treats for them to take their mind of the food you are enjoying.

With all the decorations, presents and food, our pets are more susceptible to becoming sick or injured. By keeping these possible dangers in mind, you can reduce the risks for your pet and have a happy and safe holiday season.

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