Sunday, December 20, 2009

8 Ways to Keep Your Pets Safe this Holiday Season

While you are decorating the tree or putting the Menorah in the window, don’t forget to make your home safe for your pets this holiday season.

Pets, just like children, can inadvertently be put in harm’s way by holiday decorations or traditions gone awry.

Here are 8 tips for keeping your pets safe:

Keep holiday plants out-of-reach for the family pet. Holly and mistletoe are poisonous when eaten, and the poinsettia's sap and leaves can cause severe stomach upset.

1. Tree preservatives, sugar, or aspirin placed in the holiday tree's water can cause intestinal upset and should be kept out of pets' reach.

2. Make sure your tree is secure. If you have a tree-climbing cat or a large dog with a constantly wagging tail, anchor the top of the tree to the wall with a strong cord or rope.

3. Be sure to secure holiday light cords and keep them out of the way. Pets can easily get tangled up in them.

4. Make sure you anchor candles securely away from curious pets.

5. Watch out for open doors. With everyone coming and going, it’s easy for your pet to slip away.

6. Make sure your pet has a collar and tag on.

7. Well-meaning relatives may be pre-disposed to slip your dog a bone or two under the table. Discourage them from doing so, because a chicken or other bone can be a choking hazard.

8. When putting away garbage, make sure the mountain of papers and trash are out-of-reach of your pet. Dogs are highly motivated to get into garbage.

Compiled by Farmers’ Almanac TV staff

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