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Monday, December 20, 2010

Holiday Pet Hazards

I got a lovely email from my vet that I'd like to share with you. It's about keeping us safe during the holidays.

Holiday hazards  |  How to keep your pet safe

Electric cords:    Keep all electric cords securely taped down or out of reach of your pet. Dogs and cats may chew dangling wires and be burned or electrocuted.

Ornaments:    Hang ornaments out of reach of your pet. Dogs, especially, may eat ornaments or wire hangers, which can get caught in the stomach and intestines.

Chocolate:    Keep all holiday foods away from your pet. Chocolate contains ingredients (e.g., caffeine) that can be lethal to dogs and cats.

Tinsel, ribbon, and string:    Make sure these are kept out of reach and properly disposed of. If swallowed, any of these can require emergency surgery to remove. Tinsel also has sharp edges that can cut the mouth.

Lilies, other flowers, and houseplants:    Prevent your pets from eating plants or flower arrangements. Lilies are very poisonous to cats.

Christmas tree:    Put the tree in a pet-safe room or monitor your pet when he or she is around the tree. Dogs and cats may eat the needles (even from artificial trees) or drink the water at the base of the tree, which can be toxic (especially if it contains preservatives).

In many cases, if your pet has eaten or drunk something toxic, warning signs will include gastrointestinal problems, such as vomiting and diarrhea. Other signs may include tiredness and lack of appetite, especially in cats that have eaten lilies. If your pet shows any of these signs, or if you think he or she has eaten something dangerous but is not showing any signs yet, please call us right away. Treating your pet as soon as possible is essential!

See? The email contained rather useful information, and even if all your pawrents know all about holiday hazards, it wouldn't hurt to print out this list for their house guests!

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