The holidays are filled with joy, laughter and time spent with family and friends. In the bustle of the season, however, it’s easy to forget these festivities aren’t always pet friendly. We at Loyalty Insurance know how important our pets can be to the whole family. Here are some reminders to keep your furry friends out of the vet clinic this holiday season.
Many traditional holiday decorations can be toxic to your pets. Plants that are typically used such as poinsettias, lilies, ivy, pine, and mistletoe can cause harm to your pets. Christmas trees can also be dangerous. Prevent your dogs or cats from chewing on limbs or pine needle droppings from the tree. Ingested pine needles could get lodged in the intestinal tract, puncturing the lining or bunching together and causing an intestinal obstruction. When decorating the tree, position your tree’s lights and tinsel draping away from the bottom of the tree where pets can get to them. The water base of a Christmas tree contains dangerous chemicals that could harm your pet. Don’t leave candles unattended. Pets may burn themselves, or accidentally knock them over and spill wax or start a fire.
Spending time with family and friends is part of the holiday fun. However, if you have guests coming in and out of your home this may be stressful to pets. Though the excitement of a party may overwhelm some pets, keep your pets inside during cold weather and provide plenty of toys to keep them busy. If needed, provide your cat or dog with a quiet room or crate during holiday parties and/or prepare ahead of time to discourage barking. Inform your visitors ahead of time that you have a pet.
Holiday meals are a crowd favorite. Many guests may be tempted to share the goodies with your pets. Verify with them what is and is not safe for pets before they do. If your pets will be partaking in your dinner festivities, only share pet-safe foods. Foods your pet can safely eat include: pumpkin, green beans, peas, carrots, apples (never the core or seeds), spinach, winter squash, corn (no cobs, as they can cause intestinal blockage), melon, berries, and bananas. Bones should not be given because they easily splinter and can cause serious health problems (even death) for your pet. Chocolate—which is toxic to dogs, cats and ferrets—and any candy containing the toxic sweetener Xylitol should be avoided. Keep foods containing citric acid away from your pets. Foods such as cherry pits, peach pits and apple seeds contain essential oils that have the ability to cause irritations and even central nervous system depression if a significant amount is ingested. Coffee grounds, beans and chocolate-covered espresso beans should be kept out of reach. Raw eggs, grapes and raisons, nuts, onions, and salt should also be kept out of your pet’s food dish.
We hope these tips can help you and your pets have a great holiday season. Warm wishes from all of us at Loyalty Insurance.
Sources: https://www.humanesociety.org/resources/holiday-safety-tips-pets and https://www.purina.com/articles/dog/care/5-holiday-safety-tips-for-pets and https://www.billingsanimalfamilyhospital.com/holiday-food-for-pets/