Here are our ten top tips for keeping your pet safe (and your decorations intact) this Christmas!
1. Hoover up the pine needles before your dog gets to them
While Christmas trees are not poisonous to dogs, the dead, dried pine needles that fall off the tree are hard and sharp, and could cause your pooch internal injuries if he eats them. To avoid this do a quick tidy up under the tree every day, to keep your dog happy and healthy.
2. Keep shiny things out of reach
3. Have a cool Yule, and avoid singed whiskers!
Non-LED lights can heat up pretty quickly, and along with lit candles (obviously), can present a burn hazard for your pet. Always keep these well out of the reach of your pet, and in a spot where they cannot be accidentally knocked over.
4. Go easy on the mulled wine
Alcohol is extremely toxic for cats and dogs, and can even lead to fatal alcohol poisoning if not treated in time. While no responsible owner would knowingly let their pet ingest alcohol, accidents do happen, so make sure that any spillages are cleaned up quickly to avoid a very expensive and stressful trip to the emergency vet!
5. Careful of the fancy baubles!
Obviously, broken glass is a hazard to your pet, so place more delicate decorations higher up on the tree where they have less chance of getting knocked off, or use wire or string to tie them tightly to the branches.
6. Avoid poisonous plants
While a kiss under the mistletoe might seem like a nice idea for you, it could be dangerous for your pet! Many festive greenery such as poinsettia, mistletoe and holly are poisonous to cats and dogs, so if your pet has a penchant for eating things they shouldn’t, keep plants well out of reach, or opt for an artificial alternative.
7. Secure the tree
Any cat would (literally) jump at the chance to climb a tree, especially if that tree is in your living room! Use a heavy and sturdy tree base to prevent it from being knocked over, and consider using fishing line to connect the tree to the ceiling or walls to prevent it actually falling if it tips. To deter cats from climbing on the tree in the first place, try using citrus decorations, such as dried orange slices, and wrap tin foil around the base of the tree.
8. Don’t share your food!
As persuasive as puppy dog eyes are when they’re staring up at you from under the dining table, it’s important to remember that some of your Christmas dinner is definitely not suitable for your dog to eat. Also, keep an eye on any treats (especially of the chocolate variety!) that you might put out on the table, and make sure that they’re out of your pooch’s reach. Click here to find out more about fruits and veg you can and can’t feed to your dog.
9. Silent Night
If your pet is anxious around strange people or crowded places, it might be best to leave them out of celebrations. If you plan on having lots of people over on Christmas day, try to keep the partying and commotion confined to one area of the house, and make sure that your pet has a safe space, such as a quiet bedroom, where they can retreat to if they feel scared.
10. Make it special
Don’t leave your pet out of the festivities! You could try baking your dog a treat, making your cat a scratching post, or maybe even incorporating your pet into the tree decorations. Or, for the ultimate Christmas gift, why not sign your pet up for a PawPost subscription? It is Christmas after all!
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