Protect your pets from harm this Christmas

Pet care: Auxiliary nurse Amy Ward, vet nurse Vanessa Harker, vet surgeon Anna Gaughan and receptionist Julie Peace with Yogi
Pet care: Auxiliary nurse Amy Ward, vet nurse Vanessa Harker, vet surgeon Anna Gaughan and receptionist Julie Peace with Yogi
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Among the items which present risks to pets at Christmas are ribbons on presents, tinsel, sharp tree needles, low-lying fairy lights, chestnuts and chocolates. Drink, too, can be dangerous.

Anna said: “Christmas and the associated festivities can present a bit of a minefield for pet owners. For example, dogs will drink most forms of alcohol left in glasses at Christmas parties.

“The signs of ethanol intoxication are similar to those in humans – vomiting, depression, a lack of co-ordination, disorientation and drowsiness. Dogs in these conditions need warmth, rehydration and immediate nursing care.”

Other festive items which could cause harm to animals include plants such as mistletoe, poinsettia, holly and ivy which can all cause upset stomachs, while lilies can be very harmful to cats.

Other food items which should be on pet owners’ radars include grapes, raisins, currants and sultanas, which can cause kidney failure in dogs and cats, along with macadamia nuts, onions and mouldy foods such as walnuts, bread and cheese, which can all be harmful.

Anna said: “Christmas can often be a busy and quite chaotic time. You can help your pet cope with the chaos by keeping to their normal routine and if you are spending Christmas day with friends or family and your dog is going with you, take something which smells familiar to help them feel secure.”