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Pet Care at Christmas

dog at ChriastmasAs we celebrate the end of the year with family and friends, a special thought should be spared for the furry friends who share our lives. We might look forward to decking the tree and indulging on seasonal foods, but without the proper precautions a pet could end up the worse for wear after joining in the fun.

PetRescue, a not-for-profit organisation that finds new homes for lost and abandoned pets, has some tips for making sure your pets stay happy and healthy these holidays:

• If you have a “real” Christmas tree, clean around it often as pine needles can cause internal injuries.

• Ornaments, ribbons and rubber bands can be ingested and swallowed, causing serious digestive problems. Drinking the water from the Christmas tree base can cause a range of complications and like humans, pets will suffer stomach-aches from over-indulgence of sugar.

• Don’t share chocolate or alcoholic drinks with your pet as the effects can be harmful, even fatal; and never give them ham, steak or poultry bones. Ingestion of these can lead to severe intestinal disease and perforations or obstructions.

• Fireworks are a danger to all pets, both physically and psychologically. Ensure your pet is indoors during such times, in their favourite room. Provide some familiar toys and have the television or radio playing to drown out the noise.

• Very much creatures of habit, cats don’t usually like a change in routine. They can find school holidays, evening parties and dinners, not to mention longer daylight hours, very unsettling. If you are going out for the day, make sure your cat has access to shelter that it is familiar with and that food and water is available.

• Dogs, on the other hand, love adventures! Take them with you on your travels whenever possible and they’ll reward you with much joy and delight in all things new.

If it’s not appropriate to have your animals on holidays with you, pet sitters offer a great service. Ask among your friends, as someone might just enjoy a change of neighbourhood, or try one of the many pet-sitter/housesitter websites.

Source: Echo News

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