As fall weather approaches, it is time to remind ourselves of the common and avoidable hazards that await pets.
We tend to have lots of things to plug in at this time of the year. Puppies and kittens are especially at risk for electrical shock, victims of their own insatiable curiosity. Please tuck them away.
Bones and other food scraps:
There is a memorable scene from the Christmas classic, “A Christmas Story” where the dogs are charging through the house with the holiday turkey in tow. But pets getting into our food is no laughing matter. The smells of the holiday meals are everywhere. A few years ago one of our clients lost their beloved pet to pancreatitis when he consumed the fat trimmings of the ham while the family was away. Careful disposal of the bones, fat trimmings and other parts of the meal is a must.
Holiday ornaments, Christmas trees and Holiday plants:
Holly and mistletoe are poisonous when eaten. Even poinsettias can be very irritating to the mouth and stomach. The additives to the Christmas tree stand may be irritating or worse. Sharp or breakable ornaments, dreidels, and even aluminum foil should be kept out of reach. String objects, especially tinsel and ribbons, are to be safeguarded at all costs. They are thin and sharp and can wrap around intestines or ball up in the stomach.
Keep candles out of reach of kittens and puppies. An innocent tail wag or swat with a paw could send hot wax anywhere.
Change in Routines:
With so many people coming and going, pets may go unobserved for long periods of time. Make sure that they are each wearing the collar with proper identification. Better yet, have us implant a secure microchip. Some pets may be stressed at the sights, sounds and smells of the holidays. Make the best accommodations for them. Provide a special quiet place with a blanket and fresh water for your pets to retreat to when the festivities get too stressful.