Seasoned pet owners are pretty good about seeing risks long before their pets even approach them. But among the many things that the holidays are good for, lapses in our judgment and vigilance rank pretty high. Don’t worry: with our gentle reminders, your approach to holiday pet safety can quickly and successfully reduce any potential risks to your pet this year.
Sticking to the Script
Those that celebrate Christmas usually have some pretty strong routines every year. Between the Christmas tree, holiday lights on display, fancy foods, and gifts galore, we exhaust ourselves with a packed schedule. Where does the family pet fit in all of this? Unfortunately, their priorities tend to get back-burnered.
About That Routine
Your pet is a creature of habit and thrives on knowing what’s about to come next (not to say they don’t relish good surprises, though). This holiday season, be sure to stick with your pet’s regular meal times, bathroom breaks, exercise opportunities, and bedtimes. Sticking to the plan will reduce any stress or anxiety that may occur.
On a similar note, it’s essential to check your pet’s collar and ID tags, update any recently changed contact information with their microchip, and the security of doors, fences, and gates. If stressed out, they may try to bolt and could become separated from you. One of the best defenses against holiday pet stress is exercise.
Food for Days
Upping your approach to holiday pet safety must include some serious scrutiny in and around the kitchen. While you can definitely include your pet with their very own special plate before or during the daily meal, be sure that they are never offered or given access to any of these potentially toxic ingredients:
- Macadamia nuts
- Uncooked bread dough
Holiday Pet Safety Concerns
Holiday decorations are so important to our festivities, but they definitely hinder certain safety measures. Real Christmas trees are delightful, but fallen needles can cause injuries. Also, chemicals can leach out from the tree trunk into the tree stand. Prevent your pet from drinking the tree stand water by covering it up.
Artificial trees, wreaths, garlands, and plants (like fake poinsettias, holly berries and mistletoe) are wonderful, pet-friendly alternatives to the real things.
Please bear in mind the following dangers to holiday pet safety:
- Dry and simmering potpourri
- Glass ornaments
- Ribbons, string, twine
- Discarded wrapping paper
- Snow globes (may contain ethylene glycol, a known toxin to pets)
- String lights
- Electric cords or wires
A Healthy, Safe Holiday
If you have any questions or concerns about holiday pet safety, our team at Bayside Animal Hospital is always happy to help. From our family to yours, have a safe and healthy holiday!