Category Archives: holiday safety tips

5 Tips to Help a Stressed Out Cat at Christmas

cat stress jackieBy Julia Williams

This is not the best time of the year to be a cat. Whereas many humans and even some dogs love the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it can be a bit too much for a cat. Felines are fond of quiet and routine, two things that are typically lacking from late November to January. Mid-December is the most chaotic time of all. The house is filled with all sorts of unfamiliar decorations; people come and go, some stay for a few minutes while others might stay for hours or even days. Oh, and there’s a TREE…in the house! Say what? All the hubbub of the holidays can stress out even the most easygoing feline. Here are 5 tips to help keep your kitty as calm as possible.

Stick to the Schedule

The more you can keep things the same in your cat’s world, the less stressed they will be. It’s not always possible to maintain their regular routine during the holidays, but do the best you can. Feed them at the time they normally eat, and don’t forget to dole out the CANIDAE cat treats at bedtime or whenever you usually have “treat time.” If you normally give them a few minutes of attention (petting, playing, brushing etc.) right when you get home after work, try not to forego it even if you’re rushing around like mad to get things done.

Containment

If you are having people over for a holiday party or dinner, it’s best to shut your cat in a private space where she can feel safe. It may feel like you are locking them up in “kitty jail,” but trust me…they will have far less stress than being out and about when the house is filled with strangers. Put their food and water bowls in the room, as well as a litter box and a few toys, and they’ll be all set. They may even want to use this room as their “retreat” if all of the other holiday activity becomes too stressful.
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Christmas Tree Dangers for Pets

christmas tree anneBy Linda Cole

A Christmas tree and all of the trimmings can be dangerous to an inquisitive pet, regardless of whether it’s a live or artificial tree. Dogs and cats are naturally curious about anything new in their environment, and a Christmas tree will certainly grab their interest. Shiny ornaments, tinsel, lights, intriguing smells and presents are all hard to resist. The natural thing to do – from a pet’s perspective – is to give the tree a thorough inspection. It’s hard not to smile when your cat pokes her head through decorated branches, but feline curiosity can get her into trouble. Here are some things to be mindful of as you decorate your home for the holiday season.

Pine Needles

Depending on the size of a pet and the amount consumed, pine needles can be mildly toxic for pets. The real danger is that pine needles aren’t digestible and can puncture or obstruct the gastrointestinal tract. Oils from the needles can also irritate your pet’s mouth and stomach, causing excessive drooling and vomiting. Regularly sweep or vacuum up any pine needles that fall off your Christmas tree, and never let your pet chew on the needles.
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Holiday Pet Poison Prevention Tips

holiday safety jimBy Julia Williams

The holiday season is one of joyous celebrations, but along with the merry gatherings and cheery decorations comes increased risk for our beloved pets. As responsible pet owners, we need to be extra vigilant during the holidays to prevent our dogs and cats from being accidentally poisoned or injured. No one wants to spend Christmas at the vet, least of all your pet. Here are some potentially poisonous things to look out for as you decorate your homes and plan your parties.

Imported Snow Globes

What prompted me to write this article was a heartbreaking blog post I read recently, about a family whose cat had broken a snow globe. Some of the liquid got onto the cat’s fur and despite receiving timely medical attention, the kitty didn’t make it. I was surprised to learn that imported snow globes contain antifreeze (ethylene glycol) which is highly toxic to pets – ingesting just a teaspoon can be fatal for a cat, and a tablespoon or two for a dog (depending on their size).

Snow globes are the #1 bestseller in Christmas décor on Amazon. With so many people displaying them in their homes, I wanted to get the word out about how dangerous snow globes are to pets. They are pretty, but certainly not worth the risk of poisoning a beloved pet. If you have snow globes in your home, please put them where you are 100% certain your pet cannot get to them.

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Tips for Avoiding Thanksgiving Temptations for Dogs

thanksgiving jennBy Laurie Darroch

When the Thanksgiving celebrations roll around, so do the temptations for your dog. Rich human food, interesting decorations and even guests who don’t know what a dog shouldn’t have can all be a challenge to your dog’s good behavior and to their health. As a responsible pet owner, it’s important to be aware of what could be enticing to your dog.

Foods

Rich or spicy foods can make your dog ill, particularly if they are on a routine of a healthy dog food like CANIDAE, created just for their dietary needs. All the wonderful smells and bounty available during Thanksgiving celebrations can be way too tempting for your dog. The sudden onslaught of so many varied rich foods not only can upset their digestion, but be dangerous for them to consume as well.

The most obvious danger is sharp turkey bones. Keep them well out of the way of your dog. When you throw them away, make sure they are in an enclosed container and somewhere your dog can’t reach.

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Christmas Safety for Dogs

By Bear, canine guest blogger

Hi all, it’s me Bear. I’m taking over the post today so Mommy can work on getting ready for the holidays. She discovered that she is the only person in town who doesn’t decorate on the weekend after Thanksgiving, so today she’s crawling around in the attic pulling out decorations and cleaning the house.

I love the flashing lights and the yummy smells of the holidays, but there are some things that responsible pet owners need to know about the dangers of Christmas for their dogs. So I’m here to give y’all a little rundown and some warnings that will help all you doggy Mommies and Daddies keep my canine pals happy and healthy this Christmas.

Poinsettias

Those really pretty flowers that appear around the holidays and make your holiday décor really pop are also really bad for dogs (and cats). We dogs don’t usually go around chewing house plants like those silly cats do, but sometimes we do like to check things out. The sap from poinsettias is very irritating to our mouths and stomachs and can make us really sick. You don’t want to have to clean up doggie vomit under your Christmas tree, do you? Keep poinsettias up high and make sure that you pick up the little seeds and leaves that fall off of them.

There are actually a lot of flowers and plants that are poisonous to dogs and cats; you may as well check out the list and make sure that no matter what time of year it is, you aren’t unintentionally exposing your furry friends to danger.

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How to Keep Pets Safe When Using Candles in Holiday Decorations

By Laurie Darroch

The festivities and decor of the holidays often include beautiful lit candle displays set on tables, counters, window sills, buffets and mantles. The soft ambience of lit candles is appealing, but they can be dangerous around pets and children. There is, however, an option that allows you the flickering lights and romantic lighting without the dangerous flames.

An excited or curious dog or a cat climbing on a mantle or counter, or bumping into a table while running by or curiously sniffing, can knock over a lit candle in a split second and start a fire or burn a paw or nose. No matter how careful or attentive you are, like a human child, your dog or cat is a curious and playful being. They get into things they are not supposed to. A dog or cat does not realize the dangers of a lit flame and you can’t explain it to your pet the way you can to a human child. Pets are not always aware of surrounding hazards either. Sometimes the draw of something new in the house is too much to resist.

Pets trust their human family members to keep them safe, especially when they do not understand what the dangers are. It is up to you as a responsible pet owner to show your pet that their trust is warranted. Even a well-trained pet can inadvertently knock over a burning candle with an excited wagging tail or a misplaced step on a table or shelf. You cannot possibly keep an eye on your pets every second, and it only takes a few seconds to bump a lit candle over and start a fire.
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