Winter Holiday Safety

The festive winter holidays make for a spectacularly fun season for us humans. But our decorations, jovial parties, and colorful plants put our pets at risk! Here are some tips for keeping your pets safe this holiday season. 

Decorating a Christmas tree? If you have a cat, skip the tinsel. Cats are particularly attracted to shiny objects, so they’ll likely try and play with it. Accidentally ingesting tinsel can cause gastrointestinal obstructions. 
Secure your Christmas tree to the ground or the wall to keep it from falling over if your dog bumps it or your cat climbs it. Better yet, you can deter your pets from the tree altogether by hanging lemon-scented air fresheners in it. 

Many popular holiday plants, like holly, mistletoe, poinsettias, and lilies, are highly toxic to cats and dogs and can cause organ failure and death if pets eat them. Keep all plants well out of reach. 

Lights and glass ornaments contain toxic chemicals that cause internal irritation and bleeding. Don’t place decorations where your pet could potentially chew on them. 

Do not let your pet consume any snacks that contain chocolate, xylitol (a sweetener often found in chewing gum and peanut butter), grapes, raisins, onions, currants, macadamia nuts or walnuts. Ingesting them can result in upset stomachs, heart arrhythmia, kidney failure, and seizures. 

If you are having holiday parties and your pet is often excitable or scared when you have company over, consider putting your pet in another room with toys and a comfortable bed. This way, your pet has somewhere to hide and feel safe outside of the commotion. 

Watch those alcoholic drinks! It doesn’t take much for small animals to get alcohol poisoning, which can cause serious health complications. 

We would be happy to help you further prepare for festivities with your furry friends. For more information on pet-proofing your season, give Overland Animal Hospital a call at 303-922-5500.