While we prepare to celebrate with our family and friends, we cannot forget the furry guests at the party. Whether you are lighting the Hanukkah candles or gathering around the Christmas tree, it is important to keep an eye on the pets in the household during the holidays.
Here are some tips to ensure the safety of your pets during the holiday season.
1. Give them a space to be by themselves.
Because your home can get busy around the holidays, with family and friends stopping by, it’s important to be aware that a lot of visitors can cause stress for your pets. New people are just one of many changes to your pet’s environment, they also have to deal with holiday decorations and a big Christmas tree in their living space.
Pets can become overexcited or anxious with an endless stream of visitors. Consider giving them a safe place where they can get away from all the strangers. Be it a bedroom in the back of the house, or even the garage if you live someplace warm, where guests can’t enter. If you have a cat, a cardboard box might do the trick.
2. Keep decorations out of reach.
Holiday decorations can cause a dangerous situation for your pets. Extra lights potentially add stress, while the bulbs made of glass can break in your dog’s or cat’s mouth if chewed on. The wires put a chew-happy dog in danger of electrocution, and ornaments batted off the tree by your cat, can cut your pet’s feet if broken. It is best to opt for plastic bulbs instead of glass. Place breakable decorations toward the top of the tree or out of your pet’s reach.
Ornaments are small enough to be choking hazards and cause internal damage to the intestine if swallowed! Remember to always keep an eye on pets when they’re around your Christmas displays.
3. Keep their paws off the table.
No matter how convincing their puppy dog eyes are, keep table scraps where they belong: on the table. There are a lot of human foods that are not good for animals.
Many pet owners are aware that chocolate can wreak serious havoc on a dog’s digestive tract, candies, cookies or other processed treats are also bad. Eggnog, cake, grapes, and onions are also big no-nos.
You should try your best to keep your pet on his normal diet. If you want to indulge him, give him a treat that’s made especially for animals.
4. Don’t let pets drink from the tree.
Cats are notorious for climbing Christmas trees, but they also try to drink the water in the tree’s stand and that can be toxic. If the water sits stagnant for a long period of time, it can become infested with bacteria, causing your pet to become seriously ill. Cover the tree stand during the day so it doesn’t tempt them.
5. Quickly dispose of wrapping paper.
If you notice that your dog is having symptoms, like difficulty going to the bathroom, vomiting, stomach pain or lethargy, set up an appointment with your vet to make sure your pup hasn’t eaten anything he shouldn’t have. Remember, it’s best to throw out the paper as soon as possible and fill Fido’s stocking with toys to keep him occupied instead.
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