Tips to keep holidays safe for pets
Shawn M. Finch, DVM
Published: Tuesday, December 4, 2007
With the holiday season looming, it’s not just gift-buying that you need to worry about. Christmas and New Year’s can be dangerous times for pets, veterinarians say. Christmas tree tinsel and Grandma’s homemade fudge, among other items, are hazardous for cats and dogs.To help keep your pets safe through the New Year, here are a few tips from Dr. Shawn Finch, a veterinarian at Banfield Hospital:
Avoid tinsel and ribbon.
While pretty, they can easily get stuck in a pet’s intestines. Dogs or cats who eat it often require surgery. Either don’t use it or be sure it stays out of a pet’s reach.,
Keep chocolate away from pets.
Any kind of chocolate, in large amounts, can be toxic, but baking chocolate is especially dangerous. Despite its bitter flavor, pets will eat it. Chocolate has a chemical that dogs and cats can’t process, and it hurts their nervous systems.,
Do not let dogs or cats into the garage.
Antifreeze, even just a lick, can be fatal. Store the liquid out of your pet’s reach and be sure cars aren’t leaking fluids.
Keep pets inside.
Generally, if people aren’t comfortable outside in a light jacket, it’s too cold for pets to be outside for long. Old or small pets are especially vulnerable. All pets’ noses and paws are susceptible to frostbite.
Keep electrical cords covered or hidden
so pets can’t chew them. People tend to have more cords out during the holidays.- Compiled by Omaha World-Herald staff writer Veronica Stickney