It is one of the most joyous and festive times of the year, but winter months can create special dangers for all our pets. Here are a few tips to help keep your “furry children” safe during this special time of year.
- Tinsel/Ribbon – can be ingested and cause serious gastrointestinal trauma.
- Christmas tree water (with additives) – can cause stomach upset.
- Bubble lights – contain methylene chloride which can be harmful if swallowed as a liquid or inhaled as a vapor.
- Lights/electrical cords – cats, kittens & puppies may bite cords causing electrocution.
- Glass/Plastic ornaments – can cause serious gastrointestinal trauma.
- Antifreeze – even a small amount (1 tablespoon) can be fatal to a small pet.
- Rodenticide – should not be used in a home with pets or small children.
- Ice Melts – can cause ulceration if left on the skin or feet. Can also cause serious gastrointestinal trauma if ingested.
- Alcohol – can be toxic to pets causing breathing problems & depression.
- Chocolate – dark and/or bakers chocolate is more harmful in smaller doses than milk chocolate. All chocolate should be kept away from pets.
- Human Food – is too rich for pets, and while it’s tempting to share over the holidays, it’s best to keep your pet on his/her normal diet.
- Macadamia Nuts – cause difficulty walking, tremors & swollen limbs.
- Yeast dough – if enough is ingested before it has risen fully or cooked, it will continue to rise causing serious gastrointestinal distress.
- Holly Berries – can cause gastrointestinal upset if ingested in large quantities.
- Mistletoe – can be very toxic to pets if ingested.
- Pointsettias – are not as toxic as once believed, but can cause stomach upset.
- Lillies – even in small amounts, can cause serious kidney damage if ingested.
- Yew – causes muscle tremors, difficulty walking & has adverse cardiac effects.
- Cyclamen – the roots of this plant can cause serious gastrointestinal distress.
If you suspect your pet has been poisoned, you should call your veterinarian or you can call the NAPCC.
(NAPCC stands for National Animal Poison Control Center)
This is not a free call.
* 1-800-548-2423 ($30 per case, credit card only; free follow-up until problem is resolved.)
* 1-900-680-0000 ($20 for 5 minutes, $2.95 per minute thereafter).
Thanks to Lynn for the cute photo of Jason, Kaleigh and Hannah!