The holiday season is a joyous time for family and friends to get together over delicious meals and happy celebrations that make for lasting memories. But certain things people enjoy so much this time of year can be dangerous for pets.
- Be aware of decorations! Pets may be enticed by sparkling ornaments or shiny tinsel, so keep decorations out of reach of curious pets. Some decorations may be harmful if ingested and cause health problems like intestinal blockages.
- Keep the water in your Christmas tree stand covered. Tree water is often infested with fertilizer, bacteria and other harmful elements.
- Make sure candles and other unprotected flames are not within your pets’ reach. Spilled wax can cause burns if a curious cat or dog bumps into a candle, and a flickering flame begs to be sniffed, pawed at and knocked over.
- Skip the table scraps and opt for pet-friendly treats instead. Some foods can be toxic to pets, including chocolate, candies, grapes, onions, garlic, alcohol, cooked chicken or turkey bones and more. If your pet eats something they aren’t supposed to, call your veterinarian immediately.
- Be mindful of the door as your guests are coming and going. Some pets may tend to dart out the open door, so seclude your pet to an area where they can’t escape while people enter or exit your home.
- Always be sure that your pet is wearing a collar with current tags in the event that they get lost. Pet owners should also consider having their pets microchipped, as this will help them get back home safely.
- Be sure pets are indoors and have a safe place to rest away from loud noises such as fireworks, singing and other celebratory activities.
- If you are hosting a New Year’s Eve celebration, keep in mind that protective pets may feel threatened by strangers coming into your home. Keep pets in a familiar place with lots of toys and soothing music to distract them from the doorbell.
- Limit your pets’ time outside due to the cold weather. If you will be gone for the evening, consider letting your dog into his or her crate and keep the kitty in a familiar room with his or her litter box as an alternative.