Holiday hazards to avoid this season to keep your pets safe


Urbana, Ill. (WCIA)

Dr. Tonozzi is a boarded specialist in small animal emergency and critical care and she heads the ER/ICU service at the University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital. She joins us with tips on holiday hazards for pets–hopefully in order to keep the pets safe and avoid a trip to the ER


Chocolate – Chocolate, especially the dark and baking varieties, is toxic to pets.
Grapes, raisins, and currants – These may cause vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, and kidney failure, even if they are in baked goods.
Bones – Leftover bones from that turkey or ham may crack teeth, get caught in the esophagus, or even perforate the intestines. Choose a safe treat for your pet.
Alcohol and bread dough – Not safe for pets!


Christmas tree safety – Be sure the tree is secure in case your pet gets “the zoomies.” Chewing on strings of lights may result in electrocution or painful burns in the mouth.
Tinsel and candles – Tinsel, yarn or other stringy objects, if swallowed by a cat, become a “linear foreign body” and must be treated with emergency surgery. Never allow pets to remain unsupervised in a room with lit candles.
Poinsettias and mistletoe – If you own a pet that eats anything and everything, these plants can result in an upset stomach for your pet.

Holiday Stress

Strange people, smells and loud sounds may be overwhelming for your pet. Make sure it has a safe, quiet, and escape-proof room to provide a safe retreat when needed.
Ask your veterinarian about anxiety medication and sedatives if your pet might benefit from those during high-anxiety situations.
As always, if a problem arises, call your local emergency veterinarian.

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