MISSOULA - The holidays are a great time to celebrate and spend time with folks you care about. But it would put a damper on the Christmas spirit if you had to make an emergency trip to the veterinarian's office.
Many of the foods and decorations we love can have potentially fatal effects on your pets. We talked with the Humane Society of Western Montana about some of the most common health risks your furry friends could face and how to avoid them.
“I would definitely advise people to be cautious about what’s available to their pet to eat, especially. Accidental ingestions are really common around this time of year because there’s chaos and strangers — and other people — who may not be as on top of their game about your animals while they’re in your house, said Humane Society of Western Montana Director of Outreach Meredith Stewart.
She says veterinarian clinics around this time of year treat a lot of cases of pancreatitis from dogs that get high-fat food such as bacon or turkey scraps that they’re not used to. But there are other foods that pose a more dangerous risk.
“Rodenticide is super dangerous. Xylitol is super dangerous and those aren't very common but when you find them, it’s often too late. If animals are living in the garage at this time because it’s so cold out, [make] sure antifreeze is tucked away. It’s really toxic — especially to cats — and tastes sweet and delicious,” Stewart noted. “Poinsettias are also toxic to eat and those are very common around this time of year. So, make sure things coming into your house along with the chaos are not things your pet can access and eat.”
Overall, Stewart says to make sure you have a place in your plan for your pet throughout the holiday season, even if that place is safely in a kennel. Click here for more info on how you can keep your pet safe visit over the holidays.