Pet Proof Your Howliday Home!

Pet Proof your Howliday Home


The holidays are a festive time for us as well as our pets. However, the endless activities and perpetual distractions can cause us to easily overlook potential dangers to our furry four-legged friends. This holiday season we want to share some holiday hazards and tips to make sure you take preventive measures to protect your pets!

We all know our pets are attracted to Tinsel, especially our cats. The shiny, dangling decoration reflects light and can move in the slightest draft — appearing to come alive to watchful critters. Though it is not toxic, tinsel can be a choking hazard and potentially fatal to our pets.

The problem with tinsel is that once it’s consumed, it can cause serious injury to your pet. If not caught in time, this foreign body ingestion could actually be fatal as it twists and bunches inside your pet’s intestines. Immediate veterinary care is required.

They may be pretty, but some holiday plants are poisonous—even deadly. As little as a single leaf from any lily variety is lethal to cats. Others to avoid include mistletoe, holly, pyracantha, amaryllis, poinsettias, pine needles, ivy, and yew. Drinking water from the Christmas tree stand can also be dangerous, causing diarrhea, mouth sores, vomiting, and appetite loss.

All of those bright, fun, colorful tree ornaments dangling from your tree are certain to attract your pet’s curiosity, but these can be hazardous to our pet friends as well. Be sure to place glass, aluminum and paper ornaments higher up on the tree, out of your furry friend’s reach. Pets can chew and swallow these fragile objects and broken pieces form sharp edges that may lacerate your pet’s mouth, throat and intestines.


Our many variations of twinkling bright, shiny and dangling holiday lights — such as the icicle, netting, garland, curtain, rope and candle varietal — may be another source of extreme danger to curious pets.

Electrical shock may occur when a pet chomps down on an electrical cord, causing tongue lacerations and possible death. Check your holiday lights for signs of fraying or chewing and use a grounded three-prong extension cord as a safety precaution!

If you have candles on display, place them in a hard-to-reach spot so that your pets may not access them. Not only can pets seriously burn themselves, but knocking over candles creates a fire hazard and may leave a trail of hot wax that will easily burn the pads of paws and more.

We’ve all been tempted to fashion our precious pet with a decorative ribbon “collar” this time of year, but beware that this could become a choking hazard.

Also, it’s best to quickly discard ribbons and bows wrapped around holiday gifts so that your curious companions won’t be enticed to chew or swallow them. Ingested ribbon can cause a choking hazard and ultimately twist throughout the intestines, leading to emergency surgery and even death.

In addition, festive events often mean endless edible treats. Unfortunately, some of the most popular holiday goodies, such as chocolate, bones and nuts, can be extremely toxic or fatal to pets. Try to discourage guests from feeding your pets desserts, leftovers, or alcoholic or carbonated beverages!

We want our furry friends to have a great and safe howliday season! Taking preventative measures with pets during these festive times can help ensure that you and your pets enjoy a happy — and healthy — holiday season!


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