ASPCA Offers Holiday Pet Safety Tips

Holiday lights, Christmas trees and leftovers can be harmful to pets.

Christmas is a time for family and food and although our pets are often treated like family, the ASPCA says there are some things they shouldn't get their paws into during the holidays.

  • The Christmas tree: Make sure your beautifully decorated tree is securely anchored so it doesn't tip and fall over onto your cat or dog. Don’t let your pet drink from the Christmas tree's water bowl as it may contain fertilizers and bacteria that can make pets sick.
  • The Tinsel: Cats love tinsel! But although they are amazed by the sparkles, if they swallow tinsel it can cause obstructed digestive tract, severe vomiting, dehydration and may lead to required surgery. Keep a close eye on your kitty!
  • The Leftovers: We all know that table food is not a good idea for pets. Although we may be indulging in treats, bones and sweet holiday treats are dangerous to pets and can lead to an exspensive trip to the vet.
  • The Lights: Keep all electric lights, wires, batteries and glass or plastic ornaments out of paws' reach. A wire can deliver a potentially lethal electrical shock, a punctured battery can cause burns to the mouth and esophagus and breakable ornaments can damage your pet's mouth and result in severe cuts.
  • The Misteltoe: If ingested, mistletoe and holly are poisonous to pets and can lead to nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.
  • The Presents: If your pet has been a good boy/girl and you want to get them a gift, be sure to stick to pet-safe toys that are impossible to swallow and hard to destroy. Kongs that can be stuffed with healthy foods or chew treats that are designed to be safely digestible are great gift ideas.
  • The Cocktails: There's nothing wrong with a holiday drink or two, but be sure to keep them out of your pet's reach. If your pet ingests alcoholic beverages,  it could become weak, ill and may even go into a coma, possibly resulting in death from respiratory failure.
  • The Meds: Make sure all of your medications are securely locked and not accessible to your pet, and be sure to tell your guests to keep their meds zipped up and packed away, too.



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