Your beloved pet is every bit a member of the family as you are, and of course you’ll want to include him in the holiday festivities. Follow these tips from a Richmond Hill veterinarian to keep your pets safe this holiday season.

Tree Safety

If you’re setting up a tree this year, make sure it’s securely anchored so it won’t tip and fall should your pet bump into it. Avoid tinsel, as cats see the shiny string as a plaything and may accidentally swallow it, causing intestinal obstruction. Be mindful of ornaments, and make sure they don’t have tiny breakable pieces that your pet could choke on, should he become curious and try to munch on one.

Stocking Stuffers

It’s all well and good to give your pets a few gifts this holiday, but make sure they’re safe. Make sure any chew toys don’t have small pieces that could present a choking hazard. You may want to give your cat a fun piece of string or ribbon, but it can get stuck in the intestines, causing blockage. Pick toys that are large enough that your pet can’t swallow them, or consider some nice pet clothing or new treats as alternative gifts.

Poisonous Plants

Holly and mistletoe can cause gastrointestinal upset, diarrhea, vomiting, and cardiovascular issues if ingested. Poinsettias are another popular holiday plant that can be toxic to pets if they swallow enough. Lilies are poisonous to cats, so be sure to keep them away on shelves that your pets can’t reach.

Wrapping Safety

When you’re wrapping gifts on the living room floor, it’s best to keep your pet out of the room. Wrapping paper, tissue paper, ribbon, tape, bows, yarn, and twine can all be hazardous to your pet should he try to play with them and accidentally swallow a piece.

People Foods

When you’ve got the guests over for this year’s holiday party, make sure no human foods are accessible to your pet. You don’t want your pet to chow down on something extra fatty, or even worse, something toxic like chocolate, grapes, or alcohol. Keep an eye on all the food sitting out at your party, or put your pet in a back room.

Ask your Richmond Hill veterinarian for more helpful tips on keeping your pets safe and jolly this holiday season.