Keeping Pets Safe Over Christmas
To avoid potential additional stress over the festive season here are a few tips on keeping pets safe over Christmas.
Foods for your pets to avoid include onions (as in stuffing), grapes & raisins (think Christmas cake, Christmas pud and mince pies), alcohol, chocolate, cooked bones and anything containing the sweetener Xylitol such as sugar free sweets.
Plants that are poisonous to animals include mistletoe, holly and poinsettia plants. Keep them out of reach of your pets if you do have them over Christmas.
Christmas tree decorations – avoid having decorations on the lower branches as they are easily accessible and can all too easily become ingested by even the best behaved pet. Edible decorations are also best avoided. Hoover up any fallen needles as they can become stuck in your pet’s paws or throat.
Provide some quiet space for them to escape to when things are hectic or busy. Party poppers, balloons and crackers may be fun for us but for our animals they can be a very stressful. If they do need to be separate from the rest of the family make regular visits to keep an eye on them.
Be aware of visitors who may feed your pet’s inappropriate food or be over zealous in their interactions with them. Also keep an eye on your pet if they are mingling with your guests in case they help themselves to the finger food.
Extras that can help
You could consider using products such as Adaptil for dogs and Feliway for cats. These are based on pheromones and can help your animal relax in stressful situations/environments. Essential oils such as lavender and geranium are also calming and relaxing for the whole family, pets included. Use a couple of drops in an oil burner or diffuser, or if you don’t have an oil burner a couple of drops on a cotton pad works as well (just waft it around the room and leave in a safe place). Keep the oil burner, diffuser or cotton pad out of reach of your animals and children. NEVER allow your pets to ingest essential oils and do not put the undiluted oils on your animal.
Remember that having a stroke and cuddle with your pet is a great way for you both to de-stress and relax :-)
Click here for other ways to help stay calm over Christmas