Christmas is a wonderful time of year, but it is worth being aware of some festive hazards and things which can be poisonous for pets so you can avoid a trip to see us during this festive season 🎄☃️
Substances which can be poisonous to your pets
Some foods and other things that you may have around the house over Christmas can be poisonous to your pets. This includes things which are fine for humans, so you may not be aware that they can be dangerous.
Cocoa solids in chocolate contain Theobromine which can be poinsonous to dogs. All chocolate – white, milk & dark – can contain Theobromine in varying quantities. If your dog has eaten some chocolate please bring the wrapper so that the vet can determine how much cocoa solids may have been eaten and judge how best to treat your dog.
Raisins in Christmas cakes and puddings 🍇
Raisins, currants and sultanas can be poisonous to dogs, so please take care to keep fruity Christmas cakes and puddings away from your dog. While some pets may not show any signs, poisoning can occur with as little as 6oz/170g of raisins in a 13kg dog. If your dog eats lots of raisins don’t wait for symptoms to appear, call us now.
Poinsettia plant 🌺
Many cut flowers, house plants and bulbs can be poinsonous to pets. We oftern bring seasonal plants inside at Christmas or receive these as gifts. If your pet eats a plant and you are unsure of what it is called or don’t have a label, then please bring part of the plant with you for identification purposes.
All members of the onion family, including shallots, leeks, garlic & chives whether cooked, dried or raw can be poisonous to dogs. You will find onions in gravy, ready meals and takeaways (check labels) as well as in your own home cooking. It is advisable not to offer table scraps to your dog to avoid problems.
Antifreeze ❄️ and alcohol
Many people love a tipple at Christmas, but don’t let your pet join in – alcohol poisoning in pets is more common than you think. In the winter months you may have antifreeze in the house for use on frozen car windscreens or in screenwash. Even a small amount of antifreeze consumed from a spillage or empty container can cause lethal poisonsing. Within 30 minutes animals can exhibit vomiting and depression – your prompt action to call the vet can be a life saver.
Mouldy bread and other foods
Mould on food may look innocent enough but if your pet raids the bin then it can be dangerous. Some moulds contain toxins which quickly attack the nervous system. Even very small amounts of these mycotoxins can cause tremors and seizures.
Other festive hazards around the home:
Toys, gifts and Bones 🍖🍗
Look out for small toys, decorations and small wrapped presents that could harm your pet if swallowed – you’d be amazed at what Dr Cora & Dr Jamie have had to remove from inside patients. Foreign bodies can be very dangerous, if your pet does swallow something they shouldn’t please bring them to see us immediately. Bones, large or small, raw or cooked can fragment into pieces with very sharp edges when chewed by dogs which can be dangerous, for this reason we recommend that you don’t feed any bones to your dog.
Pine needles from trees 🎄 and tinsel if eaten
There’s nothing like the smell of a real Christmas trees but try to keep the floor free of pine needles. They might not appear that dangerous, but the needles can puncture your pet’s intestines if swallowed. Tinsel can look lovely, but make sure you hang it up out of your pet’s reach. Ingesting the tinsel can potentially block your pet’s intestines which is very dangerous and usually requires surgery to remove.
Glass baubles 🐾
Real glass baubles look great on your Christmas tree but they can be dangerous to your pet if they break or are swallowed. Broken glass can cause cuts and lacerations to paws and even worse damage internally. Make sure that glass baubles are securely hung on the tree and high enough to avoid being knock off by wagging tails.