The festive season is a wonderful time; decorating the house, getting the family together, sharing in a Christmas feast, and all the chaos and fun that the festivities bring.
However, the silly season also comes with some potential health hazards for your pets, so it’s important to make sure you take some steps to prevent your furry friend getting into strife.
- Christmas dinner
Ignore those big, begging eyes and keep Christmas dinner away from your pets. Cooked bones can splinter into shards that can damage your pet’s digestive tract, gums and teeth. If you can’t resist that face, give them a raw bone instead to chew on.
Ingredients in gravy and sauces like pepper and garlic can irritate your pet’s stomach causing bloating and diarrhoea, so save it for your guests.
Desserts are a no-no as well – it’s not safe to feed your pets Christmas pudding, Pavlova, or lollies due to lactose intolerances and artificial sweeteners. Some lollies contain Xylitol, which is toxic to animals.
The big one is chocolate – delicious to humans, potentially deadly to pets. Chocolate can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, hyperactivity and more, and too much can even lead to death.
Source: RSPCA Victoria
- Christmas decorations
They’re shiny, they’re sparkly, and more often than not they’re irresistible to playful pets. Make sure you anchor your tree to avoid “timber!” moments, especially if you have curious cats looking for trouble.
Tinsel is as dangerous to pets as it is shiny. It can block their intestinal tract and may lead to surgery. And those decorative baubles are not suitable for a game of fetch, as they can crack and break into shards.
Try and keep decorations out of reach of pets, put your tree on a small table so it’s slightly higher, and do not put dangly decorations where your pets can get to.
Once you get through the mayhem of Christmas Day, it’s quickly replaced by New Year celebrations and fireworks! What is an exciting time for you can be a frightening time for your pets; all the loud noises and stimulants can send your pet into a meltdown.
Scared pets tend to try and flee from the noise, so we recommend bringing them inside the house where it’s quieter and you can keep them calm and secure.
Ensure your tags and microchips are up to date, so if they do make a run for it, it’ll be easier to track them down. Speak to your vet if your pet has serious anxiety, as they can prescribe anti-anxiety medication to help.
So, be proactive this holiday season when it comes to the safety of your pets so everyone can have a fun-filled time!