Par Dre Amélie Goupil & Catherine Lapierre TSA, le
December 8, 2014
Already the holidays ! During this time of year, even though we have our mind into good food and shopping, some precautions must be taken for the safety of our pets.
First, we find Poinsettias and Mistletoe in many homes. Both plants are often associated with the holidays and can cause irritation to cats and dogs, causing vomitting and sometimes diarrhea. So make sure to put them somewhere out of reach, especially for cats who are very good climbers.
You should also avoid chocolate (see the article on Halloween), the bones of all kinds, tobacco, coffee and tea. Once ingested, these products can be dangerous more than one way for your pet.
One thing that is often forgotten by all, are the Christmas decorations of any kind. Indeed, cats are fond of ribbons used for packaging. When they lick it, they often stick in the little bumps of their tongues and their only way to break free is to swallow those ribbons. Cats sometimes swallow very long pieces of twine and ribbon, which is very dangerous to their intestines and often ending in surgery. Dogs on the other hand love the Christmas balls ornaments, which can become sharp when broken as well as those gifts under the tree that can contain all sorts of things. All decorations and Christmas packaging can be a real danger to your pet if they are swallowed.
Finally, the cold weather can also cause some problems. It is important to prevent access to our pets to somes product particularly those containing antifreeze. The most common poisoning cases this season are antifreeze and windshield washer for the car. These products may not be attractive from our point of view, but they have a sweet taste that may appeal to dogs and cats. Ethylene glycol in such liquids, once in the body of the animal, causes formation of calcium oxalate crystals in the kidneys and therefore cause secondary kidney failure that can ultimately cause death.
So take the time to properly prevent access of your pet to all these products, and if swallowed, contact your veterinarian immediately. These small precautions will make you have a beautiful holiday season with a clear mind !
Happy Holidays !
Catherine Lapierre, Certified Veterinary Technician
In collaboration with Amélie Goupil, veterinarian