During the holidays especially, with all of the festivities and gatherings of friends and family members, we need to keep in mind the well-being of our beloved pets. It’s natural to want them to share in all of these fun times with us, but we have to remember to drop down to their level of thinking – or lack of it.
You might think your little furry doesn’t get into things, and overall, that might be true. Holidays can tempt even the veteran pet so it’s best to be looking for what might lure them to doing the wrong thing just as you would with a child. The other thing to keep in mind is that rescued animals now share our homes in greater numbers than ever before and we just can’t know what their pasts may have been. They need the eyes in the back of the head treatment until we get to know them and they learn some rules / manners as well.
Our fur babies have to be considered much like we would do for a newly mobile baby or even toddlers. They don’t have the ability to reason and use proper judgment when it comes to their own safety and that can include physical, mental, and / or emotional.
The obvious first potential hazard involves the types of things an animal might eat. When dogs, and many cats too, think there is a tasty morsel in their midst, they generally grab it without a thought or a scrutinizing sniff. Chocolate, ham and poultry bones, onions, and garlic are among the food items that can cause serious harm or even the death of an animal, but keep in mind that many processed foods should also be left out of the pet’s dish as well. Many ingredients would be best left off our own plates, but we choose to eat things high in sodium, preservatives, artificial colors and heaven only knows what some of those other things are. Our pets definitely don’t need to be eating such things.
The next potential hazards for your furry family are the non-food items that they can ingest, such as small parts from toys, ribbons and bows, icicles off the tree, plastic wrappers and other similar foreign objects many are tempted to consume. Kittens and puppies are also known to bite into electrical wires especially when all charged up [no pun intended] from the excitement of the day.
That leads me to the last hazard I will touch upon involving excitement of the Holidays with loud voices, laughing, and much moving about the house. Please observe your pets closely as what might appear to be fun and excitement, especially through the behaviors of a dog can be a confused and overstimulated pet. Animals that aren’t accustomed to having a lot of people around, especially lively children, can actually become quite stressed by the situation. Excessive panting, barking, or running back and forth between people aren’t necessarily the signs of a dog enjoying a party. An overly excited or fearful pet increases the chance for bites or scratches – especially of kids.
Also, as people come and go, the chances are greater for your animal to accidentally be let out of the house which of course can be tragic.
Do your pets a favor, and for the few hours you might have company joining in on your festivities, set up a quiet room for them to be at peace in, as they truly will be better off for it.