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Wishing You and Your Pets a Safe and Happy Holiday Season

Monday, December 24, 2012 - 10:45am
Dog and cat sitting by Christmas tree

After weeks of gift shopping, cookie baking and house decorating, it’s finally time to celebrate! From all of us here at the ASPCA, we’d like to send warm holiday wishes to you and your pets.

As you’re making your last-minute holiday to-do list and checking it twice, please don’t forget to consider your pets’ safety in the hustle and bustle of the season.

Keep these potential hazards in mind when getting your home ready for holiday gatherings:

Mind the greenery. Christmas trees, holly and mistletoe present various dangers to your pets. Make sure your Christmas tree is securely anchored so it doesn’t tip, fall and injure your pet. This will also prevent the tree water—which may contain fertilizers that can cause stomach upset—from spilling. Holly and mistletoe can also cause illnesses in pets if ingested.

Hide the leftovers. Fatty, spicy and no-no human foods, as well as bones, should not be fed to your furry friends.

Be careful with your cocktails. Don’t leave alcoholic beverages unattended where your pets might try to drink them—alcohol can cause serious illness in pets.

Use candles and lights with care. Pets may burn themselves or cause a fire if they knock candles over. Be sure to use appropriate candle holders, placed on a stable surface. Also, when decorating with electric or battery-powered lights, consider that wire can deliver a potentially lethal electrical shock and a punctured battery can cause burns to your pet’s mouth and esophagus.

As your pets celebrate the holidays with your family this year, try to keep their routines as close to normal as possible. If you plan to have guests in your home, it’s a good idea to keep your pets in a quiet, calm room with plenty of water and places to snuggle.

For more holiday safety tips for your pets, please check out this full list by our ASPCA experts.

It’s almost 2013! Don’t forget to donate to the ASPCA before January 1 to get a 2012 tax break.