Brownsville Spay Neuter Clinic
First published: 12/08/2020
The holiday season is upon us, and many pet parents plan to include their furry companions in the festivities.
As you gear up for the holidays, it is important to try to keep your pet’s eating and exercise habits as close to their normal routine as possible. Also, please be sure to steer pets clear of the following unhealthy treats, toxic plants, and dangerous decorations.
Brownsville Spay Neuter is sharing these safety tips to remind our pet owners to take proper precautions and make sure they are considering their pet’s safety when getting ready for and enjoying the holiday.
SKIP THE TABLE SCRAP SNACKS: FOODS NOT TO FEED PETS
- Bones: Bones easily splinter and can cause serious health problems (even death) for your pet.
- Candy: Particularly chocolate—which is toxic to dogs, cats and ferrets—and any candy containing the toxic sweetener Xylitol.
- Citrus and pits: Keep foods containing citric acid away from your pets. Foods such as cherry pits, peach pits and apple seeds contain essential oils that have the ability to cause irritations and even central nervous system depression if a significant amount is ingested.
- Coffee: Grounds, beans and chocolate-covered espresso beans.
- Eggs (raw)
- Grapes and raisins: These can cause kidney problems.
- Leaves and stems: From vegetables like tomatoes.
- Trash: Pets who engage in trash-digging can accidentally eat foods that are potentially poisonous to them. Keep trash hidden somewhere your pet can't access.
Be Careful with Seasonal Plants and Decorations
Avoid Holiday Food Dangers
Overindulging in the family feast can be unhealthy for humans, but even worse for pets: Fatty foods are hard for animals to digest. Poultry bones can damage your pet’s digestive tract. And holiday sweets can contain ingredients that are poisonous to pets.
- Skip the Sweets: By now you know not to feed your pets chocolate and anything sweetened with xylitol, but do you know the lengths to which an enterprising pet will go to chomp on something yummy? Make sure to keep your pets away from the table and unattended plates of food, and be sure to secure the lids on garbage cans.
- Leave the Leftovers: Fatty, spicy and no-no human foods, as well as bones, should not be fed to your furry friends. Pets can join the festivities in other fun ways that won’t lead to costly medical bills.
- Careful with Cocktails: If your celebration includes adult holiday beverages, be sure to place your unattended alcoholic drinks where pets cannot get to them. If ingested, your pet could become weak, ill and may even go into a coma, possibly resulting in death from respiratory failure.
- Selecting Special Treats: Looking to stuff your pet’s stockings? Stick with chew toys that are basically indestructible, Kongs that can be stuffed with healthy foods or chew treats that are designed to be safely digestible. Long, stringy things are a feline’s dream, but the most risky toys for cats involve ribbon, yarn and loose little parts that can get stuck in the intestines, often necessitating surgery. Surprise kitty with a new ball that’s too big to swallow, a stuffed catnip toy or the interactive cat dancer.
Plan a Pet-Safe Holiday Gathering
- House Rules: If your animal-loving guests would like to give your pets a little extra attention and exercise while you’re busy tending to the party, ask them to feel free to start a nice play or petting session.
- Put the Meds Away: Make sure all of your medications are locked behind secure doors, and be sure to tell your guests to keep their meds zipped up and packed away, too.
- A Room of Their Own: Give your pet his own quiet space to retreat to—complete with fresh water and a place to snuggle. Shy pups and cats might want to hide out under a piece of furniture, in their carrying case or in a separate room away from the hubbub.
- New Year’s Noise: As you count down to the new year, please keep in mind that strings of thrown confetti can get lodged in a cat’s intestines, if ingested, perhaps necessitating surgery. Noisy poppers can terrify pets and cause possible damage to sensitive ears. And remember that many pets are also scared of fireworks, so be sure to secure them in a safe, escape-proof area as midnight approaches.
(*) The Holiday Safety Tip Blog is a compilation of information gathered from different websites, such as the American Veterinary Medical Association website.
Brownsville Spay Neuter hopes that these tips will help the pet owners keep their animals close and safe during the Holidays.
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