Beware, Holiday Dangers

Beware, Holiday Dangers

Pets can become very ill from a variety of common holiday meal items, including table butter, meat and candy. These foods can result in gastrointestinal upsets and pancreatitis, a painful and sometimes fatal condition. When these conditions occur, pets might exhibit depression, vomiting, abdominal pain or lack of appetite. Eating tinsel, ornaments and garlands, even drinking holiday tree sap water, can lead to serious stomach irritation. In addition, poisoning from xylitol (a sugar-free ingredient found in baking goods, candy, and chewing gum) can cause a severe blood sugar problem leading to weakness, depression, and seizures.

Chocolate is another common cause of holiday accidents for pets. Many types of concentrated chocolate, particularly baking chocolate or dark chocolate, can cause serious health problems depending on the size of the dog.

During the holidays, prevention is really the key. Place high risk items and holiday foods out of reach. Dogs also like to chew on electrical cords, gift ribbons and strings. Watch for symptoms of restlessness, tremors, seizures, vomiting and diarrhea and seek immediate veterinary treatment for them.  Of course, our pets’ health and well-being is a responsibility that goes beyond just the holidays.

A few things to look for

  • Candles and hot wax
  • Candies, chocolate and foil wrappers
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Electrical cords (uncovered or untapped)
  • Ribbon, string and yarn
  • Metal ornament hooks
  • Tree tinsel and confetti
    Rubber bands
  • Beads and buttons
  • Poinsettias, holly, mistletoe and greens
  • Stagnant tree stand water and chemicals
  • Intricate or fragile ornaments
  • Rock salt and antifreeze
  • Poultry bones and meat drippings

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