Keep Your Pets Safe during the Holiday SeasonBy Home Security Source Nov 27, 2010 | 8:00:00 amPosted in: Pet Safety
One of the great ways to celebrate the holidays is to adorn your home with decorations that reflect the joy of the season. And if you plan on entertaining guests, you’ll no doubt be enjoying delicious food from various cultural and religious heritages.
With all the changes the holidays bring, curious pets can get themselves in trouble, so it’s a good idea to keep these pet safety tips in mind:
• Pine needles from a Christmas tree, if ingested, can be extremely injurious to an animal’s digestive tract, so be sure to clean up any pine needles that may have fallen from your tree.
• Holiday plants such as poinsettias, lilies, holly and mistletoe can lead to health problems in dogs and cats. Keep these out of areas where your pet could get at them.
• Dogs and cats sometimes think that electrical cords and other items are chew toys, putting them in danger of electrocution. Consider taping down the various cords for tree lights and keep other items out of reach. Unplug lights when you’re not at home.
• Be sure that your tree is stable and secure to reduce the risk of it fallen over on your pet or starting a fire if it falls over when you’re away from home.
• Keep your pet away from the water used to keep the Christmas tree moist, as it may contain fertilizer, preservatives or, at the very least, bacteria. Always check labels and look for items that identify themselves as non-toxic.
• Some animals, especially cats, might be inclined to eat the tinsel, which could prove fatal. If you can’t hang tinsel out of reach of an enterprising feline, it might be better to skip it altogether.
• Artificial snow, packing peanuts and wrapping paper
• Glass ornaments can pose a particular danger, since animals sometimes confuse them for a toy. Even ornaments such as candy canes, dried food (ginger bread cookies) and other decorations can be a severe health risk.
• Store children’s toys when not in use. Dogs that swallow toys nearly always need surgery to have them removed, since they can cause blockages of the digestive tract.
• If you decide to light candles, keep them up and out of reach.
• Keep an eye on baked goods and other people food, as some items will make your animal sick or, at the very least, result in a terrible mess! Never allow your pets to eat people food.
Dogs and cats are naturally curious, so it may be difficult to keep them away from decorations. If all else fails, you might consider surrounding your tree with something noisy like crumpled aluminum foil to alert you if they venture into the “restricted zone.”
Pet safety, in the overall scheme of holiday safety planning, requires a bit of forethought. The benefit, however, is that it will help ensure that our furry friends are around to enjoy many more holidays with us in the years ahead!
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