Tips to keep your dog safe during the holidays
Tinsel and chocolate. Two big no no's for pets. Dogs love to chew. On almost anything. Toys (and decorations) that are not designed for dogs are not safe play toys for pets. Small parts--even the squeaky part inside a toy--can spell trouble if your pup chews up the toy and swallows the choking hazard. Instead give your dog indestructible toys like a Kong filled with dog treats.
Even people food can be toxic to your dog. It's hard to resist giving your pooch a snack from the dinner table. Especially during the holidays. Unfortunately some foods that people love--even foods that are healthy for you--can harm or kill your pet.
We know chocolate and candy is bad for Fido, but did you know that meatloaf with onions is very harmful because of the onions? When my Rhodesian Ridgeback got pancreatitis after eating the turkey meat with the skin on it, I found out how quickly a healthy dog can become gravely ill. Also, you should avoid any candy or other item sweetened with xylitol. For more information on pet safety during the holidays, check out the ASPCA Holiday Safety Tips.
Common signs of poisoning include:
Muscle tremors or seizures
Vomiting or diarrhea
Redness of skin, ears, and eyes
Swelling and bleeding
For a detailed look at poisonous foods and items for pets, check out ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center
Here's a quick overview of foods pets should not eat according to the TODAY show:
Nuts (especially macadamia nuts and walnuts)
Candy or anything containing the sweetener Xylitol
Grapes or Raisins
Many of your favorite household plants are poisonous to pets too. Check out the ASPCA--17 Common Poisonous Plants
Here are 17 plants that are poisonous to pets:
Peace Lily (AKA Mauna Loa Peace Lily)
Chris Olson is a freelance writer and illustrator. She also answers to the names of chief dog walker, grocery hauler, and "the one with the keys to the car."