Season's Greetings! - Holiday Hazards

 

Here's a quick review of the most common year-end holiday hazards:

 

Bones. Small turkey and ham bones can lodge in the throat, stomach, and intestinal tract. In addition, fats, gravies, and poultry skins can cause severe gastrointestinal problems.

 

Holiday plants. Holly, mistletoe, poinsettia, and other popular holiday plants can be toxic if eaten.

 

Electrical cords. Holiday lights mean more electrical cords for kittens and puppies to chew. Make sure all electrical cords are in good condition and out of reach.

 

Christmas trees. Poorly secured trees can fall on rambunctious pets.

 

Pine needles. Ingested pine needles can puncture an animal's intestines.

 

Christmas tree water. Many of the additives used to keep Christmas trees fresh can be toxic if consumed.

 

Sweets. Holiday candy-particularly pure chocolate, which contains theobromine, can be hazardous or fatal to pets.

 

Alcohol. Unattended alcoholic beverages can be extremely dangerous if consumed by cats and dogs.

 

Ornaments. Sharp or breakable ornaments should be kept well out of reach of curious paws.

 

Tinsel, yarn, and ribbon. Linear foreign objects can become stuck in an animal's intestinal tract (especially cats!), causing a blockage or perforating the intestinal wall.

 

Cold weather considerations.  Please remember that with cold weather, animals seek warmth and may crawl up under the hood of your car. To prevent the death or severe injury to kitties, squirrels, and other animals caught in your fan belt (plus a mess!) please, give them time to get out. For instance, tap the hood of the car to warn them to escape before starting the engine. Also, try to keep antifreeze from pooling on the ground-it may be lethal to your neighbors’ pets.

 

Keep your house pet-safe and have a happy holiday season!

 

(by Don Vaughan in Veterinary Practice News)

   

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