Keep your pets safe during the holidays

Make sure Fido has just a happy holiday as you do. Credit: Metro File
Make sure Fido has just a happy holiday as you do.
Credit: Metro File

The emergency veterinarians at the Center for Animal Referral & Emergency Services (CARES) in Langhorne have seen it all during the holiday season, from cats with tongue lacerations, to dogs who eat holiday bows with metal wires. This time of year can provide a lot of excitement for humans, but can be quite troublesome for pets. Here are their three ways to keep your pets safe through 2013.

1. Keep all chocolate and raisins out of reach
Many households have extra chocolate on hand right now and it just keeps on coming through the holiday season. Dogs chocolate toxicity have symptoms of excitement, tremors, seizures, abnormal heart rhythms, vomiting, diarrhea and more. Sometimes their heart rate skyrockets! Dark chocolate is more toxic than milk chocolate. A 35-pound dog would be expected to fall ill following ingestion of 34 oz. of milk chocolate, but could get ill on as little as 3.8 oz. of dark/unsweetened chocolate. That’s just one small candy bar. Another dangerous treat is raisins, which can cause kidney failure in dogs. For some dogs, eating just a very small amount of raisins can cause life threatening disease.

2. Fatty foods can pose a health risk
Most emergencies this time of year come from the food that pets eat. When you sit down to that big turkey or ham dinner this season, consider what you are giving your pet. Turkey scraps and other holiday meals can be very fatty or greasy, which can lead to pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas). In mild cases of pancreatitis, you may notice that your pet won’t eat or they may vomit. Severe cases of pancreatitis can be fatal.

Bones from the family meal are also not a good idea. These bones can not only irritate the stomach, but they can get stuck in the mouth or throat, causing a pet to salivate excessively and drool. Even worse, if a bone gets lodged internally, it could require surgical removal. Be sure to hide the trash can from your pet on holidays, so they are not digging bones or other fatty foods out of the trash.

If you want to give your pet a special treat during holiday celebrations, ask your family veterinarian if a carrot or apple would be a good choice for your pet. Your pet will thank you for the special attention and you will be less likely to have a hospital visit.

3. Watch out for the holiday decor and presents
Cat owners should consider an alternative to buying tinsel for the holiday tree. Cats are attracted to the shiny strands of tinsel and they could easily swallow it. Tinsel can cause serious intestinal problems that often require costly surgery and can be fatal.

If you are a cat owner and want to brighten your home with flowers, avoid True Lilies (Lilium). These flowers, when ingested, cause kidney failure in cats. Keep this in mind also if you are bringing a fresh bouquet to a friend or family member’s home.

A sweet-smelling home is always a nice way to welcome visitors during the holidays, but potpourri should be kept out of reach of pets. Potpourri can cause gastrointestinal problems, including vomiting and diarrhea, if eaten.

Finally, as you unwrap your holiday gifts, be sure to watch out for ribbons, bows and small toys, all of which can be ingested by your pet. Keep an empty trash bag nearby so you can dispose of wrapping and ribbons immediately.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.