Holiday Pet Safety Tips

From decorations to toxic foods, the holiday season can be a dangerous time for a pet, but the team at St. Paul Pet Hospital is determined to make it safe for your four-legged friend. Consider the following holiday pet safety tips, and have a very merry Christmas and joy-filled new year!

Christmas Decorations

They shine, they sparkle, and they add a nice finishing touch to trees and gifts, but some of those decorations can be hazardous to pets, especially cats. If you have a cat or other curious pet, use caution with decorations like tinsel, garland, and ribbons. These decorations can easily draw the attention of a pet and even be ingested by them. But if your pet were to eat these stringy items, it could result in intestinal blockage and land them in the emergency room for surgery. We know that’s the last place you want to spend the holidays, so keep these decorations out of your dog’s or cat’s reach or simply avoid using them altogether.

Seasonal Plants

Is there mistletoe and holly hanging above your doorway? If so, make sure it stays up there, out of your pet’s reach. Mistletoe and holly are just a couple of the many plants that are known to be toxic to pets if ingested, resulting in nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and GI upset. If you buy lilies, remember that these are also very toxic (to cats) and can result in kidney failure. To keep your pet safe, simply keep these poisonous plants out of their reach or buy artificial plants instead.

Safe and Unsafe Table Foods

Tempted to share some of your holiday dinner with your pet? Before you do, it’s important to know which foods are safe and which ones aren’t. There are actually many “people foods” that are toxic to pets, such as chocolate, raisins, grapes, macadamia nuts, and foods with the sugar substitute xylitol in them. Eating these foods can result in vomiting, diarrhea, or worse. In extreme cases, it can even be fatal. Now for the good news: the safe table food! On the “nice” list are green beans, cooked chicken and turkey (no skin or bones), chopped apples, and rice. Just be sure to limit the quantity you feed your pet.

If you have any questions about these pet holiday tips, give us a call in Cathedral Hill at (651) 789-6275 or Highland Park at (651) 789-0099. A St. Paul Pet Hospital team member will be happy to assist you.