The festive times are here again, and in the midst of the activities we must make a conscious effort to pay close attention to our pets. There are some potential dangers amidst our celebrations that we should look out for with respect to our furry friends.


This is perhaps one of the easiest ways through which you might have to make an emergency visit to the vet. Certain popular holiday foods are poisonous to your dogs and cats and they should be avoided.

For example:

-Dark chocolate contains substances that are toxic to dogs especially. Consuming it in large amounts can result in gastrointestinal disturbances (diarrhea and vomiting), tremors, hyperactivity and heart arrhythmias.

– Fat from meat may cause pancreatic issues and even if it looks harmless to feed dogs with bones, your dog can choke on bones. In serious situations, bones have been known to cause lacerations of dog’s intestines.

-Feeding your pet alcohol in any form will result in bloating and discomfort due to accumulation of carbon dioxide and also alcohol poisoning. You will need to take them to the vet immediately if this happens.

-Foods that contain nuts should be avoided because of their potential to cause indigestion and obstruction of the gastrointestinal tract. Specific nuts to avoid include walnuts, almonds and pistachios.

golden christmas bow and evegreen tree  in snow

golden christmas bow and evegreen tree in snow


Shiny materials and colorful ornaments are attractive to pets and even though they are not toxic, they are potential sources of danger when ingested. Tinsel, for example can get twisted in their intestines and other ornaments can be chewed and swallowed. The edges of the chewed pieces can cause injury to your pet’s mouth and intestines and they may also choke on them.


Pets that like to chew things will be highly intrigued by exposed wires and lights. This may result in burns, electric shock or electrocution of your pets. Also, fireplaces should be demarcated with a cage and burning candles should be kept on high tables where they cannot be reached. This will prevent your pets from getting burned and/or burning down parts of your house in the process.


With the arrival of holiday guests, most, if not all precautions taken to ensure the safety of your pets may seem to get disregarded. Some guests may unknowingly leave their bags or purses open, especially those that do not have pets. Certain substances like prescription drugs may be left lying around. If your dog gets to ingest such medications, it may warrant a visit to the emergency clinic.


Having scented oils in your house in the spirit of the season is not a bad idea in itself. However, some of these oils are poisonous to your pets and can cause chemical burns, respiratory problems and tremors if they should lick them. Also, heating some of these oils inside your house can cause hot burns along with the other listed dangers.


In recent times, it has been discovered that some snow globes contain ethylene glycol, an antifreeze agent which can be fatal if taken in even in very small amounts by cats or dogs. This causes the development of crystals in the kidneys and may result in acute kidney failure with time.

Have fun this Holiday season but take every possible step to keep your pets safe and avoid a visit to the emergency clinic.