Festive Fidos – beware of Christmas dangers..

Festive Fidos – beware of Christmas dangers..

While us humans indulge in all manner of festive frivolity, Christmas is a dangerous time for pooches and all pets, with tempting but potentially poisonous treats adorning every open surface, the statistics are alarming, with a third of pet owners experiencing an emergency.

Vets NOW, one of the UK’s out-of-hours pet emergency services, sees a 788% increase in chocolate poisoning cases over Christmas Day and Boxing Day alone. (Source Vets NOW)

Most dog owners (93%) are aware that human chocolate is poisonous, Vets NOW report that 32% of pets have still been at risk after eating some, all manner of things that have caused an emergency trip to the vets are listed below. It’s a great reminder for the experienced pet lovers amongst us, and it could be an eye opener for those new owners experiencing Christmas for the first time with their inquisitive puppy.

Reports state that nine in 10 poisonings occur in the owners own home, and a shocking 5.5 million dog owners unknowingly feed their pets these harmful foods over the festive period, so let’s look at the main culprits: –

  1. Chocolate – Chocolate contains a stimulant called theobromine, a bit like caffeine, which, while tasty, is severely poisonous.
  1. Mince Pies and Christmas Puddings – All grapes, raisins, currants and sultanas are toxic to dogs; so no mince pies we are afraid, pooches should be pie-less!
  1. Blue Cheese – While delicious to us, blue cheese contains a substance called roquefortine C, which dogs are extremely sensitive to.  This is a tough one, as dogs sense of smell is much more heightened than ours, so this cheese really attracts them.
  1. Tinsel – Tinsel commonly causes dangerous blockages in an animal’s stomach, it is attractive to puppies and dogs (as well as other animals) as it is bright and rustles, playing tuggy with it should be avoided.
  1. Macadamia nuts – Lurking in biscuits, these nuts cause severe illness in dogs, so please check ingredients carefully.
  1. Garlic, chives and onion – Festive foods like gravy, stuffing and sausages can contain these, and many owners serve some Christmas dinner leftovers and add a little stuffing, which should be avoided as all Allium species are poisonous to dogs.
  1. Festive Foliage – Who does not love to have a poinsettia, maybe some mistletoe and ivy – all of which are toxic  to our pets, and a new plant or display in a different area in the home or hanging low can be very enticing. Christmas tree pines can stick into paws or inside intestines as artificial trees will cause a blockage, of course the decorations upon them can cause all manner of problems if digested, do keep an eye to make sure baubles have not fallen off, in our home if it’s on the floor it will generally get picked up by one of our pooches!
  1. Wrapping Paper – Reports show that many issues with emergency vets also come from eating a large amount of paper which can cause a possible obstruction, common in homes with children, where paper could be exuberantly strewn around, it is easy to miss Fido quietly munching on this whilst the children are squealing with excitement.

So be vigilant over the Christmas period, and make sure your family and visitors are not slipping treats they shouldn’t to Fido, if anything is suspected to have been digested, please do contact your out of vets with urgency.

Do you have Great Aunt Edna visiting who is not dog friendly, or your elderly relative is staying with you and you fear them being knocked over by your exuberant puppy, maybe you are cooking dinner for a large group and will not have much free time?

Maybe you are travelling to visit family or making a stop to the hospital to ensure sick friends and family get a visitor?  All these things can provide you with a reason for requiring day care over the festive period.  Suffolk Canine Creche are open Day Care 365 days per year, so if in doubt, do book Fido in for a festive days play, the fun never stops at Creche (apologies; the hotel for overnight care is fully booked for 24th, 25th and 26th December, only day care is available).

www.suffolkcaninecreche.co.uk Tel: 01473 63615

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