Christmas is an exciting time for everyone, including your pets. But there are some essential safety tips you need to follow in order to make sure your pet stays safe from hazards and mishaps. From Christmas trees to mistletoe, the holiday season is full of hidden hazards that you need to be aware of, because spending Christmas day with an emergency vet isn’t on any pet owner’s wish list.
Christmas Tree Hazards
If you have a real Christmas tree in your house, make sure that the water is covered, as standing water is a breeding ground for bacteria. Dogs and cats are both likely to lap away at water that is available to them, and this can mean they ingest anything from pesticides to bacteria. You should also make sure that the tree is properly anchored down, as pets can knock over trees and injure themselves. Finally, try to avoid glass tree ornaments, as these can be harmful to your pets if they smash or swallow them. Tinsel is very tempting for cats and can be dangerous if they ingest it, so it's best to keep it away from
Safety With Lighting
Everyone likes to decorate their homes with lights over Christmas, but these can be dangerous for pets if they like to chew things. Both mains-powered lights and battery-powered lights can deliver a shock to pets if they chew through the wire. Keep lights out of reach of pets and make sure you don’t leave any trailing wires that can be very tempting to cats.
Mistletoe, holly and lilies can be deadly to pets, so it’s better to switch out the real versions for artificial ones at Christmas time. Holly can lead to nausea and vomiting, mistletoe berries are highly toxic and lilies can cause neurological problems. These are all common in Christmas bouquets, so make sure you check the flowers before leaving them near pets.
Skip These Foods
You already know that dogs can’t eat chocolate, but you will need to be extra careful around Christmas to make sure your pets don’t eat anything they shouldn’t. If you have young guests visiting, you will need to make sure they know not to give your pet any chocolate or leave it anywhere within their reach. Cooked chicken bones, foods containing xylitol and alcohol can all be dangerous or deadly to pets, so it’s best to make sure you pet only sticks to his own food throughout the holidays.
Check Your Chips
Between the excitement of Christmas and the loud sounds of New Year, pets are more likely to go missing, so it’s important to make sure your microchipping details are up-to-date. Even indoor cats should be microchipped because they can easily be spooked by Christmas visitors or loud noises and might try to escape outdoors.