Holiday Tips

 

Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and other holidays are one of the latest fads. Who can resist dressing up a pet in those cute Halloween costumes or reindeer antlers?

Before you give in to this trend, make sure your pet can move freely and won't stumble over a costume that hangs to the ground. And never tie anything around his neck that can choke him. Let your pet be the judge. If he struggles and is uncomfortable, then maybe it would be best to let him stay dressed as a Corgi rather than a ghost!

Before you give in to those gorgeous, pleading eyes and feed your pet that candy bar, turkey dinner with all the trimmings, be aware of the harmful and even deadly consequences of feeding "people" food to any companion animal.

One way to reduce this temptation is to feed your pet before guests arrive, so your pet will be less likely to beg and steal food. Tell your guests of the house rules regarding your pet, such as not feeding him scraps from the table. Also, if your guests smoke, be extra vigilant and keep nicotine and alcohol out of your pet's reach. These can be highly toxic — even deadly!

Animals can get stressed with the hustle and bustle of holiday guests. Therefore, it’s best to simply keep your pets indoors and provide them with a safe, quiet, escape-proof room where they can get away from the energy and excitement. Remember to provide plenty of food and water, and let your pet catch up on some Z’s!

As your holiday visitors come and go, there will be too many opportunities for your pets to slip out unnoticed. Make sure that your pets always wear current identification tags, consider having your pets micro chipped if you haven’t already – and watch the door!

Follow these tips, and your pets will have just as much fun as you and your kids.

Holiday Dangers

Chocolate
Why it’s dangerous: Chocolate — especially baking chocolate — can actually kill your dog, so keep all such goodies well out of reach. Chocolate can affect the nervous system and cause urinary system and heart muscle damage in your pet. Chocolate is more poisonous to pets than any other candy. Chocolate contains methylxanthines, chemicals similar to caffeine that can quickly sicken dogs. In general, the darker the chocolate, the more poisonous it is.

What to watch for: Symptoms in dogs that have ingested chocolate include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy or agitation, increased thirst, an elevated heart rate, and, in severe cases, seizures.

Candy Wrappers
Why they’re dangerous: The candy itself isn’t the only threat. Ingestion of foil and cellophane wrappers can cause life-threatening bowel obstructions, which often require surgical intervention.

What to watch for: Symptoms in pets that have ingested candy wrappers include vomiting, decreased appetite, not defecating, straining to defecate, or lethargy.

Raisins
Why they’re dangerous: While good-intentioned neighbors may hand out raisins as a healthy alternative to candy, very small amounts of raisins (or grapes) can cause kidney failure in dogs and cats. Some dogs develop idiosyncratic reactions at any dose—in other words, ingesting any amount can cause serious damage.

What to watch for: Pets that have ingested raisins may show signs like vomiting, nausea, decreased appetite, abdominal pain, and severe kidney failure.

If you have any questions or feel your pet may have ingested something, please give us a call imeediately at 916-391-3677.

 

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