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Holiday Hazards For Your Pet

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Posted on 12-06-2017

Holiday Hazards For Your Pet by Stacey

FOODS common to people can cause a wide variety of health issues for our pets. These can range from simple gastrointestinal upset up to organ failure and even death. Some of the most highly toxic foods to keep away from your pets are:

Alcohol, Bones (Bones can splinter, become dislodged in and puncture the digestive tract), Butter, Caffeine,

Chives, Chocolate, Dough (The yeast can cause dough to rise and expand within the digestive tract), Fats,

Garlic, Grapes, Milk, Nuts (almond, Pecan, Macadamia, Walnut), Onion, Raisins, Sage, Salt, Xylitol ( a sweetener found in some candy, gums, drinks and foods.)

Plants common to the season that pose a toxic threat to pets include:

Christmas Cactus, Holly, Lilies (many varieties), Mistletoe, Pine (needles) and Poinsettia

DECORATIONS that dazzle our eyes also dazzle our pets’ eyes. It is good practice to first ensure any trees are adequately secured to the wall as well as by the base. Keeping chemically treated and/or stagnant tree water covered and away from pets is also important. Glass ornaments that could break and pose a danger to your pets should be isolated to the top two thirds of a tree in order to minimize risk and promptly picking up any broken ornaments and hooks that fall is also best. Tinsel and ribbon can be ingested and become lodged in your pets intestinal tract and quickly become life threatening. Potpourri and essential oils can cause vomiting and diarrhea if ingested and candles and fireplaces are hazards for happy tails and curious natures. 

WINTER hazards include frostbite and hypothermia. Utilizing booties and sweaters on walks makes the walk more safe and comfortable for your pet. It also cuts down on the amount of salt and ice melting chemicals they could potentially ingest when grooming.

Never leave your pet in your car - they do not generate enough body heat to keep themselves warm. If your pet goes outside, ensure they have a warm safe place to retreat to if the temperature drops. This should be just larger than their body with room to stand and turn around in and shelters them from wind, rain and snow, be 6" off the ground, insulated with styrofoam and filled with hay.

Cats like to sleep on warm engines where it is warm so PLEASE remember to knock once loudly on the hood of your car before you get into it. This will allow a sleeping cat the chance to escape the very real danger of being caught in the fan belt.

ANTIFREEZE is that sweet smelling, bright green liquid engine coolant that drips from engines and often contains Ethylene Glycol , a substance that is often fatal if ingested, even in small amounts. Being mindful to these spills and promptly clean them up or diluting with water will help ensure the health and safety of all animals.

If in doubt, we are pleased to answer any questions or concerns and provide prompt medical care for your pet. For a more thorough list please contact us at 416-245-8805 or email us at reception@richviewanimalhospital.ca

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