Holidays Could Bring Potential Hazards for Pets

Be Aware Of These Specific Hazards

The holidays, a time of joy and laughter. But what do your pets think of this time of year?

“Surveying your house from a dog or cat point of view and what looks like what it would be fun and tasty to get into, when your eyes are averted with guests or when you’re out at a holiday party,” Dr. Amanda Bruce, Veterinarian of PetCare of Duluth said.

Thinking pre–holiday, the holiday and post holiday, this time of year with pets are all about awareness.

“We create a lot more garbage, we’re cooking a lot more, so don’t expect your dog to not get into the garbage. Assume the worst is going to happen,” Bruce said.

Now is the time to put the garbage in a cupboard or a closet if you don’t already.

“Also thinking about ‘what do you have wrapped under the tree’, a lot of us give food as presents. A dog or cat is going to be able to identify a wrapped food package,” Dr. Bruce said.

And our favorite decorations could be the most harmful.

“Tinsel in a cat in particular can act as a foreign body. Basically it gets anchored in the stomach and then a part of it will get into the intestines, then the intestines will bunch up on it and it can act as a foreign body,” Dr. Bruce said.

The holidays are also a time to be hyper aware of an animal that stops eating or starts vomiting.

“Because those are really the big signs that they’ve gotten into something that they shouldn’t have gotten into,” Dr. Bruce said.

Aside from food hazards, how you’re going to handle upsets in behavior is another important factor.

“If you don’t have a very social animal, and you have a lot of people coming, think about if you have a back room, a basement an area of the house that the pet is used to being in that they can be confined to,” Dr. Bruce suggested.

And the problem we all know, what to do with that christmas tree?

“Fishing line, to tie it or secure it to the wall is probably a good idea. Baby gates are another really good option. Or keeping them confined to different areas of the house. It’s tough keeping animals out of the tree,” Dr. Bruce suggested.

As always, distract and replace.

“Have something that your pet enjoys even more and everytime you see them go to that tree, start bouncing that ball, or throw that favorite toy, and just get them distracted and away from it,” Dr. Bruce said.

Lastly, keep your regular activities going, regardless of the hustle and bustle.

‘If your pet is used to getting a walk a couple times a day, even if you have to change the time a little bit, still try and keep that part of the routine because you’re getting that anxious energy out,” Dr. Bruce said.

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