Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Pets

Focus on pet safety while celebrating holiday season

Of course you want to include your furry companions in the festivities, but as you celebrate this holiday season, try to keep your pet's eating and exercise habits as close to their normal routine as possible. And be sure to steer them clear of the following unhealthy treats, toxic plants and dangerous decorations:

Christmas tree: Securely anchor your Christmas tree so it doesn't tip and fall, causing possible injury to your pet. This will also prevent the tree water — which may contain fertilizers that can cause stomach upset—from spilling. Stagnant tree water is a breeding ground for bacteria and your pet could end up with nausea or diarrhea should he imbibe.

Skip the tinsel: Kitties love this sparkly, light-catching "toy" that's easy to bat around and carry in their mouths. But a nibble can lead to a swallow, which can lead to an obstructed digestive tract, severe vomiting, dehydration and possible surgery. It's best to brighten your boughs with something other than tinsel.

No feasting: By now you know not to feed your pets chocolate and anything sweetened with xylitol. And make sure to keep your pets away from the table and unattended plates of food, and be sure to secure the lids on garbage cans.

Toy joy: Looking to stuff your pet's stockings? Choose gifts that are safe.

Dogs have been known to tear their toys apart and swallowing the pieces, which can then become lodged in the esophagus, stomach or intestines. Stick with chew toys that are almost indestructible.

Long, stringy things are a feline's dream, but the most risky toys for cats involve ribbon, yarn and loose little parts that can get stuck in the intestines, often necessitating surgery. Surprise kitty with a new ball that's too big to swallow, a catnip toy or the interactive cat dancer.

Forget the mistletoe and holly: Holly, when ingested, can cause pets to suffer nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Mistletoe can cause gastrointestinal upset and cardiovascular problems. And many varieties of lilies, can cause kidney failure in cats if ingested. Opt for just-as-jolly artificial plants made from silk or plastic, or choose a pet-safe bouquet.

That holiday glow: Don't leave lighted candles unattended. Pets may burn themselves or cause a fire if they knock candles over. Be sure to use appropriate candle holders, placed on a stable surface.

Wired up: Keep wires, batteries and ornaments out of reach. A wire can deliver a potentially lethal electrical shock and a punctured battery can cause burns to the mouth and esophagus, while shards of breakable ornaments can damage your pet's mouth.

Put the meds away: Make sure all of your medications are locked behind secure doors, and be sure to tell your guests to keep their meds zipped up and packed away, too.

A room of their own: Give your pet his own quiet space to retreat to—complete with fresh water and a place to snuggle.

New Year's noise: Keep in mind that strings of thrown confetti can get lodged in a cat's intestines, if ingested. Noisy poppers can terrify pets and cause possible damage to sensitive ears.

Comments

Hernando Pet of the Week for Jan. 19

PET OF THE WEEKherpetoftheweek011918Ace had a rough start to life. Heís on a mission to find a patient, committed home willing to help him adjust to a happy life. The shepherd mix is 8 month sold, has one blue eye and a brindle coat. He has been neut...
Published: 01/16/18
American Kennel Club adds 2 breeds to roster

American Kennel Club adds 2 breeds to roster

NEW YORK ó A spirited Dutch duck-luring dog and a friendly French rabbit hound are now running with the American Kennel Clubís pack. The club announced Wednesday that itís recognizing the Nederlandse kooikerhondje and the grand basset griffon Vendeen...
Published: 01/10/18
Hernando Pet of the Week for Jan. 12

Hernando Pet of the Week for Jan. 12

Humane Society of the Nature CoastLilith is a sassy 7-year-old who can sometimes play hard to get. She is easily swayed by treats, and loves a warm lap and fuzzy mice. Lilith is spayed, vaccinated and microchipped. Inquiries about adopting Lilith or ...
Published: 01/08/18
Updated: 01/09/18
Hernando Pet of the Week for Jan. 5

Hernando Pet of the Week for Jan. 5

Humane Society of the Nature CoastCasper is a white, 11-month-old boxer mix. He has been neutered, microchipped and is current on his vaccinations. Inquiries about adopting Casper or other dogs and cats can be made at the Humane Society of the Nature...
Published: 01/02/18
Updated: 01/04/18
Hernando Pet of the Week for Dec. 29

Hernando Pet of the Week for Dec. 29

Hernando County Animal ServicesTucker is a 66-pound, 5-year-old black flat-coated retriever. He was found as a stray in the reserve behind the Sterling Hills community in Spring Hill. Tucker is participating in the Heel to Heal program at Hernando Co...
Updated one month ago
Find A Friend: Toby, the Tiger Tabby

Find A Friend: Toby, the Tiger Tabby

Celebrate the new year with the cat in a hat! Others may have retired their Santa caps for the season, but Toby likes to take his time. The shy but playful 1-year-old lost his original family in an eviction, and shelter stress nearly did the tiger Ta...
Updated one month ago
Find A Friend: Rachel, the Cat

Find A Friend: Rachel, the Cat

St. Francis Animal Rescue presents Rachel, a calendar girl for the groupís "12 Cats of Christmas" special. Sweet Rachelís been waiting patiently in foster care for a year and a half ó18 months. She was taken in as an itty-bitty pint when her birth mo...
Updated one month ago
Hernando Pet of the Week for Dec. 22

Hernando Pet of the Week for Dec. 22

Humane Society of the Nature CoastBubba is a 12-year-old chorkie (yorkie-chihuahua mix) hoping to have a new home for Christmas. He loves snuggling and playing hide and seek with his best friend, Princess, a 12-year-old chorkie who was dropped off wi...
Updated one month ago
Find A Friend: Sergeant Pepper, the boxer mix

Find A Friend: Sergeant Pepper, the boxer mix

Sergeant Pepper is a card-carrying member of Tampaís Lonely Hearts Club. Heís a stray from Ybor City, a hopeful hipster ready to join your family band with a little help from his Second Chance Friends. Sergeant Pepper is a year and half old Boxer mix...
Updated one month ago