As one of the biggest and busiest celebrations of the year, Christmas is a very exciting time for humans. However, for many animals Christmas can be a source of anxiety and can even present potential dangers that may put your pet in harm’s way.
Research has shown that Christmas Eve is 20% busier for emergency referrals to veterinary practices than any other day of the year. Head of Training at Pets Corner Lucy Ross provides her top tips for keeping your pets safe and happy during the festive season:
Keep decorations out of reach: cats and dogs can be very inquisitive animals and will want to explore new and exciting things. The dazzle of Christmas decorations displayed around the house will be attractive to many pets. Animals may be tempted to chew on electric cables attached to decorative lights so make sure any loose wires are tucked well out of the way – for example with special cable hideaways or appropriate tape.
Glass tree baubles can cause serious injuries if they shatter so opt for tree ornaments that won’t break easily, like felt or wood. Small or textured decorations may present a choking hazard and some may contain toxins that are dangerous to animals if ingested. Make sure all decorations are firmly secured and out of the reach of pets.
Keep an eye on the Christmas treats: we all love indulging in lots of fancy festive fare at Christmas. Whilst we readily fill up on gastronomic goodies many festive foods hold an unexpected threat to our furry friends. Chocolate, nuts, grapes and raisins are all highly toxic to animals and can cause serious digestive issues. Always avoid the temptation to feed your pets with human treats and keep an eye on them to ensure they aren’t sneaking a snack behind your back. Keep pets healthy and calm by sticking to their regular diet and normal feeding times throughout the festive period.
Protect pets from the cold winter weather: as the temperature drops and the nights close in make sure your pets are kept warm and given plenty of extra blankets to sleep with. Invest in a good quality animal coat that is fitted to your pet’s measurements. This will help to protect your pet from getting too cold whilst outdoors.
You can find further tips, advice and information on all things animal related on the Pets Corner website in the Petopedia section; www.petscorner.co.uk