Sunday, November 23, 2008

*Holiday Dangers To Pets*

Holidays can create special dangers for your pets. Each year during the various holiday seasons, thousands of pets are seriously injured and/or become deathly ill. It's a busy time ... a time of much planning, shopping, cooking and baking, rushing to and from parties and get-togethers with relatives and friends. Oftentimes we forget about our little four-legged members of the family during the rush and festivities. They are curious and anxious as we, their caretakers are and there are many hazards waiting for their curiosity.

Here are some reminders to help you keep your pets safe this holiday season!

*Holiday treats, alcoholic beverages, rich, fatty food scraps and bones can be harmful or toxic to pets. Keep your pet on his regular diet and caution visitors against giving your pet "special treats."

*Supervise all candles - pets are attracted to the bright "lights" in a darkened room. Not only could they receive serious burns, but they could knock the candles over, spilling hot wax onto furniture and carpeting. Don't leave candles unattended for their sake and for the obvious fire hazards.
*All other decorations should be carefully placed so that the pets can't pull or scratch off any small pieces to swallow.

*Pets' highly sensitive noses pick up scents before humans can. Therefore, don't be surprised when Fluffy and Fido are underfoot in the kitchen while Thanksgiving goodies are being prepared. Watch those hot containers filled with turkey and ham drippings. The pets can easily tip them over causing severe scalding and burns to themselves.
*Don't feed pets the cooled drippings either. Human seasonings aren't good for pets, plus the fact that the rich stock and drippings can easily upset pets' digestive systems.
*Though it's so tempting, don't give your pet large quanitities of cooked turkey and ham during the holidays. Again, human food is too rich; overfeeding of human food can cause additional health problems and feeding human food will often lead to unsatisfactory eating habits when given pet food at their regular mealtimes. Consumption of human food can also result in pitiful begging, an aggravating habit hard to break, when the family sits down for meals.

*BONES ARE DANGEROUS! Please, please don't feed your pets bones, especially poultry bones. Poultry bones splinter easily - each year thousands of pets are treated for consumption of splintered bones, causing pain and sometimes death.
*Provide a quiet and relaxing retreat. The number of houseguests and parties increases during the holiday season, and pets don't know what to make of all the extra household activity and noise. Even the best of pets will bite when they are nervous or scared. Allowing them their own private sanctuary will reduce the amount of stress they experience and the number of "accidents" you'll have to clean up off your floors and carpets.
*If you are planning to take your pet with you when visiting friends and relatives during the holidays, be sure to contact them in advance to find out if your pet is welcome. Because of the excitement during the holidays, it might be best for you and your pet to board your pet or hire a reputable pet sitter.

*Identify your pet. If you haven't purchased an ID tag for your pet before the holiday season, make this the first gift you give him. With all the coming and going and opening and closing of the front door, it's just too easy for a pet to slip out and get lost, taken or hit by a car.

Diggin' Dawgs & Co. would like to take this time to wish each of you a very Happy Thanksgiving season. Make this holiday a enjoyable one for you and your pets.

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