Pets & the Holidays (Part 2)

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Yesterday, I posted Part 1 of this series on holiday safety tips for organic pet owners. Here are some additional suggestions from Dr. Lorraine Corriveau, a wellness veterinarian at Purdue University’s School of Veterinary Medicine.


Overeating: Stick to your pet’s normal diet. Table scraps, garbage-raiding and counter-surfing can lead to stomach upset. Too much rich food can cause serious inflammation of the pancreas, which can be life-threatening.

Holiday Visitors: Pets can become overexcited, confused or frightened by an onslaught of holiday guests. Keep them in a quiet part of the house, and make sure they have a safe retreat from children and well-intentioned visitors. Keep pets’ beds or kennels in a safe place, and be sure guests know they’re off limits.

Ornaments: When decorating your tree, help prevent breaks and mishaps by keeping weighty ornaments close to the floor and valuable ornaments/family heirlooms out of reach from curious mouths, noses and wagging tails. Keep knickknacks on shelves inaccessible to animals. Also make sure Christmas trees are tethered to a nearby wall or window frame for ferrets or cats that like to climb.

New Pets: There’s no time worse than the holidays to bring a new pet into the home, but many people surprise a loved one with a new puppy or kitten on Christmas morning. The excitement can cause a new pet to be confused or overstimulated. Wait until the week after the holiday, and then puppy- or kitten-proof the house so the pet can be introduced into a quiet, safe environment. Don’t forget to ask a veterinarian for advice on selecting a new pet.

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