Keeping Pets Safe During the Holidays
You have a beloved family member who just happens to have four legs rather than two. You want to keep him/her safe during the holidays. Here are some tips to accomplish that.
*Keep people food out of reach. (Some people food is hazardous to your fuzzy family member’s health. Such food includes chocolate, onions, chives, and garlic.)
*Keep small, swallow-able items out of reach. (If your daughter’s Barbie doll just lost her arm, your pet may find the arm and eat it. Next thing you know, he’s sick, you have a veterinarian’s bill for a preventable surgery, and Christmas is not as enjoyable for you and your family as it might otherwise have been.)
*Be vigilant in looking for hazards to pets. Tinsel is a common hazard for pets: pets are attracted to their shininess, motion (i.e., the way they move with the slightest wafting of air), and ease of consumption. However, once tinsel is ingested, it can cause life-threatening harm to your pet’s digestive tract. Another often overlooked hazard is fragile glass Christmas tree ornaments. Pets are attracted to these ornaments because of their shininess and motion; they can knock the ornaments off the tree, the ornaments may break, and paw pads can be lacerated from broken glass.
*Know your pet’s temperament. Does your feline daughter dislike crowds and hectic activity? If so, provide her a quiet space all her own when guests come to visit. Make sure her quiet, private space includes her food, water, litter box, and comfort items (i.e., favorite toys, a catnip item, a blanket or item of clothing that smells like you, etc.). Does your canine son require gentle petting rather than rough-housing? If so, limit small children’s access to him as small children have not yet developed their fine motor skills or knowledge of how best to approach animals, so they can often handle animals more roughly than intended.
*Keep pets indoors. In many areas, the holiday season is characterized by cold winter weather. Protect your fuzzy baby from the frigid temperatures. If your canine son needs to go out, consider a doggie sweater and other winter garb . . . and make sure he comes back inside at the earliest possible opportunity. Never leave a pet unsupervised outdoors in frigid temperatures.
By following these tips, you can keep your pets safe during the holidays.
May you and all your family members have a very merry Christmas!