Christmas is coming…..
Christmas is approaching fast, and it is a wonderful time of year for you but not always for your pets…. There are many foods and decorations that may pose a danger to your pets, here is some advice to keep you and your pets happy this Christmas. For your pet’s safety this Christmas we recommend you should buy your pet’s presents from a reputable pet shop or veterinary clinic. We have many lovely toys and treats at both our Cassiobury and Katherine Place surgeries for you to browse.
Christmas Foods that are Dangerous to Your Pet
• Turkey bones (and other cooked meat bones) – these can easily splinter and can become stuck in throats or pierce the intestinal tract.
• Stuffing and nut roast – contains onions and garlic, causing destruction of red blood cells which is potentially a fatal anaemia.
• Mince pies/Christmas pudding/Christmas cake containing Grapes, raisins and sultanas – can cause acute onset kidney failure even if only eaten a tiny amount
• Chocolate – the darker the chocolate the more dangerous. It contains theobromine causing seizures, coma and heart failure.
• Alcoholic beverages – can cause deadly poisoning
• Salt – can be found in high levels in gravy, can cause kidney problems
• Macadamia nuts
• Mouldy or spoiled foods – can cause acute onset tremors in your pet
• Leftovers – should be avoided as can cause vomiting and diarrhoea, they are much richer that your pet’s normal diet
Other Christmas Dangers for Pets
Holly, mistletoe, poinsettia, lilies and yew are all poisonous to your pet and should be kept out of reach
Loud bangs/noises- Remember loud noises may panic your pet, such as Christmas crackers, poppers, balloons, and popping corks.
Fireworks are about again at Christmas and New Year please view our tips to help your pet stay calm around fireworks.
Wrapping paper/ ribbons – Remove your Christmas wrapping paper (and toys) from the floor to avoid your pet chewing or swallowing it. Serious harm can come to pets ingesting ribbon as it can cause bunching of their intestines which becomes fatal if left without prompt veterinary attention and probable surgery.
Nervous cats and dogs may be spooked by a large tree and other decorations appearing overnight in your home. You could try a feliway plug in diffuser (for cats) a few days before the decorating starts and gradually decorating the home over a few days may help the cat or dog to acclimatise. Try to avoid moving the cat or dog’s usual sleeping place to accommodate Christmas decorations.
Make sure your tree is well anchored so your pet can’t pull it over. Many inquisitive pets try to climb trees and could become seriously hurt if it fell. Try to discourage this by only allowing the pet in the room with the tree under supervision and distract with their own toys.
Dropped needles from trees are sharp and can get stuck in your pet’s paws or cause harm if ingested. Make sure you regularly sweep up needles, fence off the tree to separate it from your pet or alternatively use an artificial Christmas tree.
Do not hang chocolates from your tree, these are highly toxic to pets and are more likely to be tempting if within view
Some animals can be spooked by flashing fairy lights, try using lights that don’t flash
Make sure all electric cords are out of reach to prevent your pet chewing them or becoming entangled.
Take care with tree decorations; these can cause an accident or even be fatal to your pet. Cats and young dogs are likely to be more interested in decorations hanging from your tree. We advise you use unbreakable decorations and nothing too small. Care with tinsel as this can be serious if a pet is entangled or even fatal if ingested.
Most pet related Christmas dangers are easy to avoid so just have fun and remember to be pet safe! Please ensure you have our opening hours and contact details to hand over the festive period.
We wish you all a very Merry Christmas from all the staff at the Park Veterinary Centre!
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