Christmas is not only a stressful festive occasion for us humans; this holiday period can present stressful situations for your pet too. From exposure to food that could make them sick to dangerous Christmas decorations that pose a choking hazard, many things can place your pet’s health and happiness at risk over December. Follow these tips to ensure your pet has a happy and safe festive season with your family.
Foods such as chocolate, coffee, dried fruit, avocados and spicy and fatty meals that are firm favourites for festive treats are fatal for pets to consume. Don’t leave these foods out in the open where your pet could sneak a taste and be careful when giving your pet leftovers as they can cause upset stomachs or other, more serious, conditions.
Christmas decorations like sparkly tinsel and ribbons are tempting things to play with but pose a risk to dogs and cats as they could choke themselves during play. Colourful and attractive wrapping paper, Christmas lights and power cords can tempt pets to nibble on them, causing harm if ingested or electrocution if they chew on wiring, so keep these concealed. Ensure you anchor your Christmas tree, so it can’t topple over and cause injuries.
Christmas festivities can be noisy and stressful for pets. The loud sounds emitted from fireworks and Christmas crackers can easily traumatise a pet. Ensure your pet has a dark, quiet space as a retreat. Your vet can also recommend medication that will help your pet escape the noise, and it will also come in handy during New Year’s celebrations.
You should be ensuring your pets are protected from diseases and parasites all year round but you need to be extra vigilant at Christmas due to the warmer weather. Flea eggs and larvae love warmer weather which increases their development rate. If you’re not careful, your pet could develop a flea infestation in the blink of an eye. If you’re travelling to the bush or going into NSW, make sure your pet is protected against ticks with your parasite prevention products and perform regular tick checks.
Veterinary care is just as important to ensure the health of your pet over the holidays. Schedule an appointment at South Eastern Animal Hospital today to have your pet checked for a stress-free holiday season.