Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Pet Safety 101: Holiday Hazards You *MUST* Avoid


While we prepare to spend Thanksgiving Day with friends and family, there are often some hidden dangers to our pets that can be overlooked in the excitement. Below are six hazards to avoid to make sure that ALL members of your family have a safe and happy day. 

#1 - Hot Ranges and Burners. Be sure to keep your pets out of the kitchen and off the counter/stove! With so much cooking going on, a cat or dog is likely to try and investigate the good smells that are tantalizing their taste buds. Soft pads on their feet will burn quickly and easily so this is definitely a big one to keep an eye out for!

#2 - Bones. I can’t emphasize this enough! Some loving pet parents believe that a scrap bone is a kind gesture to include their pets on the festivities and this cannot be any further from the truth. Bone fragments, especially turkey and chicken bones, splinter easily and can cause internal bleeding and other life threatening situations. 

#3 - Table Scraps. It’s a good time of year to remember that animals cannot eat the same foods we do. Many common ingredients used in holiday dishes are poisonous or toxic to pets (onions, garlic, chocolate, raisins, grapes, turkey/chicken skin, etc. etc.). It’s always best to err on the side of caution and avoid table scraps all-together.

#4 - Watch Your Doors. When entertaining guests during the holidays, it’s good to remember that not all pets handle the company or excitement well and often times guests may not have the animals and their safety immediately on their mind. Often times, entry doors get left open for extended periods of time which gives your pet the perfect chance to escape. This actually happened to someone in my family one year – their dog ran out into the street after the front door was left open by a guest and was hit by a car...thankfully her injuries were not life threatening. A scary lesson to learn the hard way!

#5: - Candles. With all the hustle and bustle during holiday gatherings, attention usually isn’t paid to mundane things such as candles. If you have pets and also love candles, holiday events may be a good time to forgo them. It is very easy for a cat or dog…or guest…to knock a lit candle over and cause a fire. Instead, opt for pre-lit electronic candles. 

#6: - Turkey Strings. The string used to wrap and cook turkeys is a cat fantasy come to life. Please immediately discard any string and foil in a tightly closed trash can. Strings can cause choking and intestinal blockage which could be deadly. 

We hope these tips serve as a good reminder. From our home to yours, all of us at Jonah’s Place wish you and your pets a Safe, Blessed and Happy Thanksgiving Day!

Michelle Brockman, Leslie Mendenhall and Stephanie Perkins