Safety is No Accident

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Sure, it’s a little warm and it probably won’t be a white Christmas, but the spirit remains the same; we celebrate one another and the spirit of togetherness regardless of which holidays we observe.

Some of the most fun we’ll have this holiday season is with our pet companions. Who doesn’t like filling their stockings with treats and spoiling them with new toys and outfits?! But it’s important to exercise good judgment when doting on our fur babies.

First and foremost, it’s imperative that they be collared and tagged in the event of an escape. There’s lots of ins and outs, deliveries, arrivals and departures during the holiday season, and your cat or dog can easily slip out a door that’s in constant motion. If that unfortunate scenario unfolds, you’ll want your pet to be easily identified and returned to you, so having your cell phone number on the tag or collar is key. Custom engraving and stitching are good options to explore if you want to buy them some new duds this year.

I like to put as many presents under the tree as possible. Not only is it festive, it’s a good deterrent for curious cats and small dogs that may want to climb Mount Christmastree, nibble on the cords, eat an ornament, or drink the fertilizer-filled and potentially stagnant water at the base of the tree. These scenarios can result in big annoyances like fallen trees to more serious situations like gastrointestinal problems to very serious consequences like stitches, surgery or even electrocution! So keep those wires covered and keep the fur friends away from the tree.

It’s also of paramount importance that we watch what our pets ingest during this time of year. There are lots of new and seemingly innocuous things in our homes as we approach the end of the year that are can be intriguing to cats and dogs but should be strictly monitored.

Ivy and poinsettias are bad for our pals. Pine needles can cause obstructions, holly can cause digestive distress, and mistletoe can cause cardiovascular issues. Lilies can cause kidney failure in cats, even if they brush against the pollen and ingest it thrugh grooming their coats

For safety sake here’s a list of all the food that your pets should never ingest: Chocolate, sugar-free goodies (xylitol), chives, citrus, fruit and vegetable pits, coffee, raw or undercooked eggs, fish and meat, fatty, spicy and salty foods, garlic, grapes and raisins, onions, anything in the trash, and cooked bones. Raw bones are a great, healthy treat for dogs, but cooked ones can splinter and cause choking hazards.

For more tips on holiday safety for dogs check out the American Kennel Club’s article.