Holiday Pet Dangers

With your pet spending more time indoors because of the snow and ice and with the holidays coming up, there are a few common household items that pose a threat to your pet’s health. Keep these things in mind to help everyone have a merry season:

De-icing Salts that are used for melting snow and ice can cause irritation to your pet’s paws and are poisonous if ingested. Wash and dry paws as soon as your dog or cat come in from outdoors. You can also opt to by Fido some stylish Velcro booties or make Fluffy an indoor kitty.

Household Plants can also be toxic to your pet. Over 700 plants have been identified as potentially poisonous, including, azalea, philodendron, mistletoe, and lilies. Visit the Humane Society’s website for a detailed list.

Holiday Decorations can pose electric shock and burns, as well as choking hazards. Keep your cat or dog in an undecorated area while you are away from home. Unplug any decorative lights when your pet will be unsupervised.

Chocolate is poisonous to dogs, cats, and ferrets. If your pet ingests chocolate, contact your veterinarian immediately.

Leftovers & Unusual Foods can be hazardous to your pets. Chicken Bones can shatter and choke your fluffy friend.  Large bones can cause intestinal blockage and may require surgery for removal. Overindulging your pet with fatty foods like gravy can cause stomach upset and even pancreatitis. Other foods to keep away from pets include, onions and onion powder, yeast dough, coffee grounds and beans, grapes, alcoholic beverages, salt, tomatoes, potatoes, rhubarb leaves and stems, and macadamia nuts. Avocados can also be toxic to rabbits, mice, and birds.

Fumes from non-stick cooking surfaces and self-cleaning ovens can be toxic to birds. Be cautious when using any kind of spray around birds.


— Janni Kimble, RiverWoods Pet Hospital

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