Tag Archives: Holiday Season

Protect Your dog from these seasonal dangers!

Image by jwvein from Pixabay 

‘Tis the season!

More specifically, it’s that time of year to proactively protect your dog (and of course other pets) from seasonal dangers! While many of the dangers are associated with the Holiday Season, not all of them are. Just as many hazards are associated with the Fall and Winter Seasons. Keep reading below to learn how to best protect your beloved pet from all seasonal hazards!

 

Pet Dangers Associated with Fall/Winter

The Fall season presents a variety of potential dangers to our dogs (and pets)! One in particular with most kids being home-schooled due to the Coronavirus. 

Keep School Supplies Away from Pets!

                    Gábor Adonyi from Pixabay

School Supplies

Keep curious noses and paws away from common school supplies like glue sticks, pencils and pens, crayons and scented magic markers! Smaller items are even more dangerous because it only takes a second for a pet to ingest things like small erasers, staples, batteries, pushpins, paper and binder clips, rubber bands, magnets and more. Although many of these items may not present a toxic threat, stomach upset and blockages are possible if your pet ingests one of these items! Remember, dogs explore their world first with their nose and then their mouths! 

Snacks

Empty Snack Bags Can Suffocate Pets

          Benjamin Sz-J. from Pixabay

Another danger associated with homeschooling kids includes snacks and drinks. Many snacks while tasty for our kids, can pose a threat to nosy K9s! Grapes and raisins, salty pretzels and popcorn and even empty potato chip and other snack bags can pose a suffocation threat to pets who unknowingly put their heads inside the bag to lick the salt or eat up the crumbs! Once inside the bag, your pet’s breathing can tighten the empty bag around their throat and it may be too late before you notice it!

Many snacks also contain the sugar-free sweetener called xylitol. While not harmful to humans, this popular additive IS toxic to dogs and is found in a variety of candy, gum, mints, snacks, cookies and even sodas. So read all labels carefully and keep all snacks and drinks out of reach from your dog!

 
Click here to Learn the 11+ Surprising Products That Contain Xylitol

 

    R Schönbrodt-Rühl from Pixabay

Autumn also poses other potential dangers including:

  • Snakes getting ready to hibernate,
  • Mushrooms ready to harvest, and even 
  • Piles of raked leaves!

Your dog may not be the only creature who loves leaf piles! Unfortunately, you may not see them until they have latched onto your pet. Insects like ticks, earwigs, spiders and centipedes love to hide in these piles for shelter, warmth and breeding. Even snakes and rodents may take up residence in leaf piles.

Avoidance is the best way to protect your dog from what lurks in leaf piles. But, if your dog or other pet gets into a pile of leaves, bathe and then carefully inspect and remove any insects trying to hitch a ride!

Getting Ready for Winter 

                  Shutterbug75 from Pixabay

Many of our winterizing preparations can cause toxic harm to our dogs and other pets. These include:

  • The use of rat and mouse poisons/rodenticides
  • Engine coolant/antifreeze spills 
  • Rock salt and other ice-melting products like water softener salt pellets; homemade deicers with dish soap, rubbing alcohol, and warm water; or a water and vinegar mix; or fireplace ashes.

 

Pet Dangers Associated with the Holidays

         S Jutzeler, suju-foto from Pixabay

The holidays are right around the corner and that means some additional seasonal hazards for your beloved pets.

Toxic and Poisonous Holiday Plants

  • Mistletoe
  • Amaryllis
  • Lilies (for cats)
  • Holly & Berries 
  • Daffodils (especially the bulbs)
  • Note: Traditionally, poinsettias have been considered poisonous to pets. Actually, they are non-to-mildly toxic and prone to giving your pet a mild rash if they brush against it or mild stomach discomfort if they ingest it.
  • Christmas Trees & Plants treated with a pesticide pose a serious risk (and potential death) to young pets including puppies and kittens. 

Other Toxic Items

      PublicDomainPictures                 from Pixabay

Batteries: Traditionally, dogs ingest MORE batteries around Christmas than any other time of the year! Keep both old and new batteries out of reach!

Potpourri: Often a good-smelling temptation for your pet that contains toxic essential oils, chemical perfumes, pine cones, dried fruit, cloves and flowers. Bottom line, potpourri poses not only a choking hazard but pose potential poisoning for your pet. Keep it high and out of reach! (This includes all liquid potpourri too.)

Popcorn Strings, Tinsel and Ribbons: If your dog or cat gets hold of strings of popcorn, ribbons, strings or tinsel, there is a strong possibility of choking! 

Ornaments and Decorations: Pets are dazzled by ornaments and decorations as much as their human guardians. But curious noses, paws and mouths can mean trouble! For the best protection, block off access to the Christmas, decorations, candles, pine needles and gifts when you cannot closely supervise your pets. Place breakable decorations higher on the tree or shelves to protect your pets if they break. Also, never hang homemade salt dough ornaments on the tree … they can actually kill your pets if ingested!

Trash: Keep all trash locked away and tightly secured from curious noses and mouths. Special holiday foods can spell trouble for your nosy and hungry pets and even wildlife!

Holiday Foods That Are Off-Limits for Your Pets!

This alphabetical list below is by no means exclusive, but it will go a long way in protecting the pets in your home at the holidays!

BlueCheeseAndGrapesAreToxicToPets

   Linda Roisum from Pixabay

  • Alcoholic drinks (including egg nog, beer, wine and other spirits)
  • Artificial sweetener called xylitol
  • Blue cheese
  • Bread Dough (raw, not baked)
  • Caffeine (including coffee, tea and chocolate)
  • Chocolate, cocoa, chocolate coins
  • Cooked bones and corn cobs
  • Dairy (including butter, milk, cream and cheese)
  • Desserts
  • Dressings
  • Fatty meat scraps and skin, drippings and gravy
  • Fruitcake, mince pie and Christmas/Plum puddings
  • Grapes, raisins and currants
  • Ham (including bones), bacon and sausage
  • Hanukkah doughnuts: Sufganiyot
    KeepStuffingAwayFromPets

      Marlita Annette from Pixabay

  • Hanukkah potato pancakes: Latkes 
  • Hanukkah pastry: Rugelach 
  • Macadamia nuts 
  • Mushrooms
  • Onions, leeks, chives, garlic and scallions
  • Pistachios
  • Spices (including sage, baking powder and soda, nutmeg)
  • Stuffing
  • Walnuts

Keep this blog handy as you plan and celebrate the holidays safely with family and pets!

Guest Blog: 11 Christmas Risks for Dogs

Protect Your Dog from These Christmas Risks

Christmas is a time to have fun, indulge and celebrate!
Since our pets are such an important part of our family, it’s natural to
include them in the holiday celebration as well!

 

But this festive season also presents many hidden dangers to our canine and feline friends, from toxic food to hazardous seasonal plants and even decorations!

To ensure your beloved pet remains safe this holiday season, keep reading about the unusual risks to our pets this festive season.

 

11 Christmas Risks for Dogs

Batteries

Batteries Pose Risks to Pets

Did you know that more dogs ingest batteries during Christmas than at any other time of the year?

Just like with your kids, apply the same security measures for your dogs. It is vital to cover all batteries and wires so that your dog cannot access them. Batteries can cause burns in the mouth and esophagus leading to other severe internal injuries.

Enjoy a safe Christmas with your dogs by keeping all new and old batteries out of reach of your pets.

 

Live Christmas Trees

Live Christmas Trees Pose Risks To Pets

 

For some people, Christmas is incomplete without a Christmas tree. But pine needles (real and fake) are dangerous if your dog chews or swallows them! They can cause mouth injuries and swelling; if ingested, they can cause vomiting and diarrhea. 

Also, stagnant water from live trees can cause diarrhea or nausea in your dog.

Whether you use a real or artificial tree, create a perimeter to prevent your dog from swallowing any of the tree’s needles (and decorations!).

Also, ensure that the tree is securely stable so it won’t fall over and cause injuries to your dog, other pets or even children. 

 

Salt Dough Ornaments

Salt Dough Xmas Ornaments are a Risk to Pets

 

These commonly used holiday ornaments are made out of baked dough and contain flour, salt, and water. This mixture can be fatal for our dogs, especially small puppies

But unfortunately, these ornaments can invite a pet’s curiosity thanks to their curious shape, colors and smells. But if ingested, the results can be unpleasant and worse for our pets.

 

Candles

Lit Candles Pose Risks to Pets

Candles can be a great way to bring Christmas spirit into our homes. But as a pet parent, avoid leaving burning candles unattended – or within reach – of your pets.

Dogs (and cats) are naturally curious about new smells and tastes. A curious pet could easily get burned; or worse, cause a fire if a burning candle is knocked over.

Consider using no-flame candles instead. If you decide to light candles, be sure to place them on secure tabletops and remember to extinguish them before leaving the room.

 

Silica Gel

Silica Gel Poses Risks to Pets

 

Silica gel in small packets is often found in the packaging of new handbags, shoes or electrical equipment. Although it has low toxicity, it can cause blockages in your dog’s gut if they eat it.

Always be careful when opening Christmas presents with silica gel packets and securely dispose of them immediately.

 

 

Potpourri

When eaten, potpourri can cause severe gastrointestinal problems in dogs. These issues might last for several days, Keep Potpourri away from Petseven after passing through the gut.

Proactively protect your dog by keeping all potpourri securely out of reach. 

 

Chocolate

Chocolate can cause severe gastrointestinal problems in dogs. These issues might last for several days, even after passing through the gut.

To protect your dog, you should keep them out of reach.

 

Blue Cheese Poses Risks to Dogs

Blue Cheese

Despite the popularity of blue cheese, it does contain roquefortine C, a substance which dogs are susceptible to. As with all of the Christmas foods around, be sure to keep blue cheese away from your dog.

 

 

Cooked Bones

While you may think that cooked bones are a safe treat to give to your dog to enjoy, nothing could be farther from the truth!

Cooked bones are very brittle and can easily break into tiny, sharp pieces when chewed. These tiny pieces can cause irreparable harm to your dog’s gastrointestinal tract including blockages and piercing of the intestines. Keep all cooked bones away from your dog and make sure they are securely disposed of where your dog cannot get to them. 

 

Mince Pies Pose Risks to Pets

Mince Pies & Christmas Puddings

Mince pies and Christmas puddings contain toxic grapes, currants, raisins and sultanas and should be kept away from dogs and other pets. 

 

 

Alcoholic Drinks Pose Risks to Pets

Alcohol

Alcohol can cause diarrhea, vomiting, tremors, coma and even death in dogs.

Keep any and all alcohol beverages (including beer) out of reach of all pets and children for a safe holiday celebration! 

 

 


Wishing you, your family and four-legged best friends a safe and Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

 


Image Credits (In Order Shown):

Image by Pexels.com

Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay 

Image by Maciej Szewczyk from Pixabay 

Image by Gerhard Gellinger from Pixabay 

Image by Ann San from Pixabay 

Image by Deb Douglass from Pixabay 

Image by Don Johnoghue from Pixabay

Image by darianstibbe from Pixabay

Image by Михаил Прокопенко from Pixabay

 

Poinsettia … Holiday Friend or Foe?

The holidays are coming! Trees, decorations and beautiful, festive plants are appearing everywhere!

But, if you have dogs in your home, are you hesitant to bring the traditional poinsettia plant into your home?

It’s true that poinsettias have traditionally been considered poisonous to pets.

However, the truth is that they are “non” to “mildly” toxic. Poinsettias are actually more prone to giving your pet a mild rash if they brush against it; or, if they ingest it, just mild-to-no stomach discomfort.

So go ahead and enjoy this gorgeous plant!

Learn more about which holiday blooms and buds are toxic to Fido by clicking here.

BEFORE You Hire that Holiday Dog Sitter …

dogs-1816853_1280

The holidays are fast approaching which means dog owners will be looking for dog-sitters to watch over their furry family members.

But, before you hand over the keys to your kingdom (and K9s), make sure you know exactly what you (and your dog) are getting into! Don’t leave this important decision to the very last minute, you could come to regret it.

Below are some 8 due diligence tips you MUST do first:

  • Did the potential sitter come recommended by a friend or family member? Great! STILL get testimonials from other previous clients.
  • Always set up a face-to-face meeting with you AND your dog to make sure you both feel at ease with the potential dog-sitter. Make sure you’re meeting the actual dog-sitter, not just the owner of the dog-sitting business.
  • Are they acting in a professional manner? Do they offer you a contract that spells out exactly what they will do … and what they need from you as well? Are they are asking specific questions about the kind of care you’re seeking and making notes?
  • Do a trial run; have the potential sitter watch your dog for several hours or a day (at least once or twice) before you leave for an extended period of time. Notice how your dog acts/reacts around them; these are all clues about what you – and your dog – can expect.
  • Do they have the appropriate insurance or bonding to protect you and your property?
  • Do they have current First Aid certification? Ask to see it. Remember, you’re relying on them to protect your dog especially if something unforeseen happens.
  • Ask about any specializations they offer … do they specialize in small breeds? Big or giant breeds? It makes a huge difference with their comfort level and how well they can deal with your specific dog.
  • Does your dog have special needs? Make sure the person you’re looking to hire can comfortably handle those special requests (giving medication or shots, dealing with an arthritic/fearful/blind or deaf dog, etc.).

By taking the time to find and get comfortable with a potential dog-sitter, you will increase the chances of a pleasant and successful experience of bringing a caretaker into your home and your dog’s life.

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