The holiday season – 2020 is on us, and several pet parents plan on including their furry friends as much as possible in this year’s festivities. Before lighting the candles, welcoming your guests, and bringing out the pumpkin pie, it is imperative to take a moment to consider the health and holiday safety tips for cats and all our pets during this important yet hectic time of the year.
Top 4 Holiday Safety Tips for Cats!
Here are some guidelines to follow to ensure that this holiday season stays accident-free for your precious pets.
1. Be Cautious When Choosing Your Decorations
Christmas decorations make your home look festive, but they also present risky situations for your pets. For example, Christmas trees can be a hazard when your pets try to climb on them. To keep your tree from possibly tipping over, try tying it to the ceiling or doorframe with a fishing line.
Also, avoid adding any water additive to the bowl of your Christmas tree. Pets love to drink out of your tree water and add things like aspirin or sugar to the water to harm your pets. Even if you don’t add anything to your tree water, it is a place where bacteria can thrive, so shoo your pets away from it if you see them drinking it, or they can get nausea or diarrhea.
You may want to skip putting tinsel on your tree altogether. Cats love to play with this sparkly, merry, and light-catching decoration; however, the problem is that they enjoy carrying it in their mouths. If your cat accidentally swallows the tinsel, it can lead to an intestinal disorder – obstructed digestive tract, dehydration, severe vomiting, and possibly even have to have surgery to remove it.
Avoid hanging breakable ornaments on your Christmas tree this year. Pets can easily knock an ornament off of the tree and shatter it on the floor. If they chew on it, your pet’s mouth and digestive tract can become cut from ingesting the ornament pieces.
Lights on your tree can cause burns or a potentially lethal electric shock if your pet decides to chew the cord. Keep batteries out of reach as a punctured battery may cause burns to the esophagus and mouth. You must consider such holiday safety tips for cats.
Speaking of burns, make sure any lit candles are kept far out of your pet’s reach, but that isn’t enough. Use appropriate candle holders, set on a stable surface. Whenever you leave the room where the candles are burning, put the candle out! Your pets may find a way to knock it over and hurt themselves or start a fire.
Be wary of any plants you place inside your home, as there are several toxic to pets if ingested. Dangerous festive plants for pets include poinsettias, mistletoe, amaryllis, holly, pine, cedar, and balsam. Instead of taking a risk on plants, you are uncertain; it is a better idea for artificial plants made from silk or plastic.
2. Don’t Feed Your Pet These Foods
Is your pup staring at you with those big, beautiful eyes, begging for some table scraps? It is understandable how easy it can be to give in. However, if you decide to, be sure to avoid giving your precious pooch all of the following:
- Turkey: Even a small amount of turkey or its skin can cause your dog to develop pancreatitis.
- Baked Goods: Yeast dough cause painful gas and dangerous bloating in pets.
- Chocolate: Completely off-limits, as it is toxic to dogs and cats.
- Onions, Raisins, and Grapes
- Creamed Vegetables
- Foods with Spices
Some of these foods, such as sweets or creamed veggies, will give your dog an upset tummy. However, foods such as grapes, onions, or chocolate can get your dog into big trouble if eaten. Check out the top 10 cat foods that you should prefer.
Hopefully, you are aware that you should never give your pets any alcohol. Most people are intelligent enough never to give it to their pets; however, your dog or cat may find their way to it if placed on a table where your pet may reach it.
While you are spending time with friends and family, be sure to keep your eye on the garbage as well. Your dog has a superb sense of smell, and they will surely locate a treasure of the best leftovers if they are within their reach in the trash. Keeping a lid on your trash can is the best way to make sure your dog doesn’t get into trouble this way.
3. Take Care When Hosting Parties
If you are hosting a holiday party, all of the noise and excitement may cause your pets to become unnerved. Here are some ways to prevent unneeded stress on your pets. Consider this as one of the most imperative holiday safety tips for cats.
Provide a safe haven where your pet can retreat if they want to get away from the noise. This can be a quiet bedroom or a crate in a corner where no one else has access.
It is wise to inform your guests ahead of time that you have pets so that if they have allergies or other issues with pets, they will be prepared. This also opens up the door for them to let you know if they were hoping to bring their pets along with them as well.
Watch your pets carefully when your guests are entering or exiting your home. Even if they are comfortable around people, they may make a mad dash out of the door when given the opportunity. To avoid your dog becoming lost, make certain your dog is wearing an ID tag with your information on it and is micro-chipped.
4. Be Prepared for Holiday Travel
- According to the AMVA, whether you are heading out on the road with your pet or flying by air, you will need to have a health certificate from your veterinarian.
- Be sure to pack everything that your pet will need. This should include food, medications, medical records, and first aid supplies.
- Never leave your unattended pet inside of your vehicle. They should be properly restrained in a carrier or secure harness.
- If you are boarding your dog while you travel, make sure your dog is up to date on their vaccinations.
With a bit of planning and forethought, the holidays can be a safe and fun time for everyone, even your pets. From leaving out dangerous decorations and plants to making sure that your pets only eat what is safe for them, including your pets in your holiday festivities is sure to be a memorable experience.