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How To Keep Your Pets Safe At Christmas

Keeping your pets safe during the holiday season is essential, as there are many potential hazards around the house during Christmas. Here are some tips to ensure your pets remain safe during the festivities:

Secure the Christmas Tree

Make sure your Christmas tree is securely anchored to prevent it from toppling over if your pet decides to investigate. Weighted tree holders are great for this. If you are not able to close the door where the tree is to keep your pet away from it, consider using a gate or barrier to keep your pet away from the tree when you're not around.

Choose Pet-Friendly Decorations

Avoid using tinsel, as not only is it generally bad for the environment, it can be enticing to cats and dogs. Whilst it looks cute when pets play with tinsel, it can cause serious internal problems if ingested. Always opt for unbreakable ornaments where possible. If you do have fragile ones, hang these towards the top of the tree out of your pet's reach. Also ensure you keep ornaments with small parts, like hooks or beads, away from pets who might chew or swallow them.

 

Secure Electrical Cords

Tape down or secure electrical cords to prevent your pets from chewing on them as pets can get electrocuted if they chew through wires. Use cord protectors or hide cords behind furniture whenever possible.

Be Cautious with Candles

Place candles out of your pet's reach to prevent burns or fires. Consider using battery-operated candles instead of real ones for added safety. Also be careful with scented candles. As pets have a very sensitive sense of smell, some strongly scented candles may be overwhelming for them.

Watch Out for Poisonous Plants

Common holiday plants like poinsettias, holly, and mistletoe can be toxic to pets if ingested. Keep them out of reach or opt for artificial versions instead to play it safe.

Secure Gifts and Wrapping Supplies

Keep gifts and wrapping supplies like ribbons, tape, and scissors out of your pet's reach. Ingesting ribbons or plastic can cause intestinal blockages.

Be Careful with Food and Treats

Chocolate, alcohol, raisins, and certain artificial sweeteners (like xylitol) are toxic to pets so ensure they are kept well away from your pet's reach. Also, be cautious when sharing holiday meals with your pet, and try not to be persuaded by the puppy dog eyes. Some human foods can be extremely harmful.

Provide a Safe Space

If your pet becomes overwhelmed by guests or the noise of holiday gatherings, provide a quiet and safe space where they can retreat and relax.

Supervise Pet Interactions

Supervise interactions between your pets and guests, especially if your pet is not accustomed to strangers or children.

Stick to Routine

Whilst this can often be difficult, try to maintain your pet's regular schedule for feeding, exercise, and playtime as much as possible during the holidays to reduce stress.

Update ID and Microchips

During the Christmas season, it can be easy for pets to get lost due to a hectic houseful of guests or if you travel with your pet. Ensure your pet's identification tags and microchip information are up to date with your current contact information in case they get lost.

By taking these precautions and remaining vigilant, you can help ensure that your pets stay safe and enjoy a happy, healthy holiday season with your family.

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