Beware of These Holiday Pet Hazards

The holidays are a time of food, fun, and family. They also bring a few pet hazards to be aware of! Keep your furry friend safe by following your Chesapeake, VA veterinarian’s tips, found below.

Tree Ornaments, Lights, Tinsel

Don’t let your pet play with tree ornaments, decorative lights, or tinsel. Many pets see these items as fun toys, but they can all cause choking or intestinal obstruction. Plus, it’s possible for pets to pull the tree over on top of themselves when they’re frolicking around near it. For safety, keep your pet a safe distance away from the tree whenever possible and don’t let them play with anything hanging from it.

Tree Base Water

It’s important to restrict your pet’s access to the base that anchors your holiday tree in place. If you have a real tree, the base holds stagnant water that can contain harmful bacteria and other contaminants. Don’t let your pet drink this water.

Sweet Treats

The holidays are prime-time for chocolate, candy, and baked goods. Remember to keep these far out of your animal companion’s reach. Chocolate contains caffeine and theobromine, chemicals that can harm pets even in small amounts. Candy and certain baked foods may be sweetened with xylitol, an artificial sugar that can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and worse in pets.

Wrapping Paper and String

Will your floor be littered with wrapping paper and string during the holidays? It’s best to clean this up sooner rather than later—pets may like playing in mounds of wrapping paper, but if they decide to ingest it, an upset stomach or vomiting may occur. String can cause a dangerous intestinal obstruction and other serious problems. Give your pet a safe chew bone or puzzle toy to play with instead.

Alcoholic Beverages

If your holiday celebrations will include alcoholic beverages, keep a close eye on them to make sure your pet doesn’t try to take a sip. Also be sure to clean up any spilled drinks immediately. Alcohol—liquor, beer, wine, champagne, and even some foods made with alcohol—can poison pets in very small doses, leading to organ damage or worse.

Keep your veterinarian’s phone number on hand at all times to call in the event of a pet emergency. Also be sure to ask your Chesapeake, VA vet about other potential holiday pet hazards and how to keep your animal companion safe from harm.

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