Did you know that festive seasons can be stressful and hazardous for our pets?
During the Christmas period, we often decorate our houses and open our homes to friends and family, which means a busy household, new faces and more noise which can be scary for your pet, stressful and making them feel uncomfortable.
Not only that, Christmas décor is seen as a new toy and mischief is written all over their cute furry faces.
Thus, as pawparents, we need to make sure that our pups can cope with the festivities and that they stay healthy and happy.
Below are a few things we should have in mind to provide safety and happiness.
First of all, make sure you provide them with a safe room in the house- so they can escape if it all becomes too much for our pup.
But let's see what else we need to be aware of heading into the most festive season.
Pet-Proof the Christmas Tree
Curious pups will want to explore the odd tree that appeared in their living room. Dogs are notorious for trying to jump onto—or even into—the tree, which could easily cause it to come crashing to the floor.
If you are planning on having a fir or pine tree in the house, it's worth bearing in mind that although they look lovely, they can be harmful to pets. The oils in fir trees can be mildly toxic, causing stomach upsets, and the needles themselves can get stuck in your pet's paw or throat. Regularly sweep up needles to avoid any accidents.
Also, make sure the water reservoir (if you are planning to use) inside of the tree stand is not easily accessible to your curious little pup. As the tree drinks water, it can release sometimes-toxic sap into the stand that smells tasty to dogs.
Sweetie tip: Try to block access to the tree stand by thoroughly covering it with aluminium foil and a well-wrapped tree skirt. This way, you will also avoid them from doing their business on the tree base, as they will see it as any other tree out there.!
If on the other hand, you have a fake tree, make sure you anchor the tree securely to avoid a dangerous tree-tipping disaster. Check your tree stand daily to confirm that the eyebolts are still locking the tree in place.
Sweetie tip: For added security, anchor the tree to your ceiling with a ceiling hook and fishing line.
Pet-Proof Decorations and lights
Decorations, tinsel and twinkle lights only bring curiosity to your pup. For us, they may be lovely Christmas ornaments but for the pups new toys to chew through. From nibbling the nativity scene to gobbling up toxic mistletoe, your dog can put a damper on your inner interior decorator, but more importantly can cause cuts in the mouth, throat, and digestive system, as well as other serious injuries.
Sweetie tip: Be sure you fasten holiday lights to your tree and place cords out of reach of your curious pup's mouth.
Pet-Proof gifts and treats
Take care with presents under the tree. If someone has given you a gift of chocolates, your dog will find this out much quicker than you will. Not only will the present be ruined and you will not enjoy the chocolates, chocolate is poisonous for our pups along with sweets and candies.
Make sure your stockings are hung by the chimney with care this holiday season; you should keep children's toys, gift wrap, and candy out of reach at all times.
If you believe your pet may have eaten something they shouldn't have this holiday season, contact your veterinarian immediately. Keep the numbers to the nearest emergency veterinary hospital handy on a printable pet planner if harm or injury should happen after hours.
Sweetie tip: You should place all candies and presents well out of the way of our happy wagging tails pups.
Not Pet-proof! Christmas Plants
Popular decorative plants like holly, mistletoe, and the poinsettia are lovely to have around and decorate the house but can be poisonous if ingested by pups.
English and Asian varieties of the holly plant contain toxic saponins, which can cause severe gastrointestinal distress when eaten.
Mistletoe is a watch out; eating the leaves or berries of this common Christmas plant can cause stomach upset and a slowed heartbeat.
The poinsettia flower is typically only toxic when ingested in large quantities, so its reputation as the most dangerous Christmas plant is somewhat undeserved. That said, the milky white sap of the poinsettia tends to cause diarrhoea, excessive drooling, and vomiting, which can endanger a pet's health.
Christmas bouquets and floral arrangements that contain lilies are very hazardous too.
Sweetie tip: Cautious pawparents should probably steer clear of including these beautiful but dangerous plants in their Christmas décor.
By following our Sweetie Christmas tips, you can make the most of the beautiful festive season with your furry friends and avoid any potential problems.