VAIL STEWART RUMLEY | DAILY NEWS SAFETY FIRST: Inquisitive pets can into some interesting, and potentially harmful, things over the holidays. Make sure your home is pet-proofed for Christmas and avoid an emergency trip to the vet. Pictured is Leo, who is up for adoption at the Betsy Bailey Nelson Animal Control Facility in Washington, 252-946-4517.
VAIL STEWART RUMLEY | DAILY NEWS
SAFETY FIRST: Inquisitive pets can into some interesting, and potentially harmful, things over the holidays. Make sure your home is pet-proofed for Christmas and avoid an emergency trip to the vet. Pictured is Leo, who is up for adoption at the Betsy Bailey Nelson Animal Control Facility in Washington, 252-946-4517.

Archived Story

The gift of safety

Published 8:44pm Thursday, December 19, 2013

 

‘Tis the season: for emergency veterinarian visits.

Sad to say, but it’s true. Christmas can be a dangerous time of year for Fido and Fluffy because there is all sorts of stuff about the house — stuff that can cause quite a bit of damage to the family pet.

According to the ASPCA, taking a proactive approach to potential dangers will take a little stress out of the holidays.

One of those ways is by making sure your tree is secure and not in danger of falling over should a collision between animal and evergreen occur. Imbibing the stagnant water in tree stands can make animals ill (in a not so pleasant way) because the way may be mixed with fertilizers from the tree (not good for digestion).

Playful kitties like the shiny and the sparkly and not just to bat around, sometimes. Eating tinsel can lead to all sorts of outcomes, including surgery. So, cat-owners, this may be the year to go tinsel-free and save yourself a trip to the vet.

Of course, Fido and Fluffy need something to go in their stockings, but pet owners should be choosy when picking out those stocking stuffers. The ASPCA recommends indestructible chew toys for dogs and items without ribbon, yarn and loose little parts for cats.

Don’t feed your pets holiday food, and have a conversation with guests about not doing so, as well. High on the list of foods likely to cause intestinal harm are chocolate, caffeine, anything sweetened with xylitol (a sugar substitute) fatty foods and spicy foods. If your pet gets a bellyful of any of them, it may not be too pretty.

As always, do not let Christmas candles burn unattended, especially if you have a pet. Use appropriate candleholders on stable surfaces so there’s less risk of candles being knocked over by rambunctious animals.

Christmas is the giving time of year. Let’s give our pets the gift of safety.

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