I was watching Martha Stewart the other day and they were talking about holiday hazards for pets.

With Christmas just around the corner I thought I would share some of the tips with you.

Christmas tree decorations can shatter when they fall and your pet may step on or swallow the pieces. If your cat or dog swallows a shard, take the animal to the vet or mold cotton balls soaked in water into the shape of a pill and push it to the back of the pet’s throat to induce swallowing. Feed the pet high-fiber bread, and for the next three to four days keep a vigilant watch. If they’ve stepped on a shard remove the piece and bandage the cut area and take your pet to the vet.

Tinsel is very attractive to cats since they love shiny objects. If tinsel falls on the floor, or the cat reaches for it and swallows it, the animal will have difficulty breathing and may start gagging. If your pet swallows tinsel, feed it white bread soaked water or heavy cream to surround the foreign bodies, which should enable the animal to pass it in its stool. Of course, see a vet if you suspect a bigger problem.

Outlets and Wires
Pets may chew on electrical Christmas light wires and get shocked. Tape the cords to the floor with duct tape, or run them through PVC pipes. Make sure to unplug the Christmas lights on your way out, and for extra protection cover open outlets with a guard. 

If your dog is choking, do not induce vomiting. Just watch your pet for signs of distress and take him to a vet. It’s important not to induce vomiting because it would do more damage coming up then if it just comes out on its own.

Colorful foil can cut the pet’s mouth or pose a choking hazard. Chocolate is bad for dogs. Keep lollies and sweets in dishes that are not accessible to your climbing cats. If your pet swallows any wrappings, try feeding your them white bread soaked in water, and hopefully they’ll pass it in their stool. It’s best to also call your vet. 

Christmas Tree
If you have a real tree then the chemicals in the tree water can pose a threat. If the tree stand looks like a pet’s water dish, cats and dogs will be attracted to it. No pet will die from drinking the water but they most likely will vomit. It’s better to be proactive rather than reactive. Keep a tree apron secure around the bottom of the tree so your pet cannot get to the water.

Open flames are an issue especially with jumping cats or flying birds. Keep an eye on your pets around open flames to ensure the candles don’t get knocked over.

For the full article by Marc Morrone  on the Martha Stewart website click here. 

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