- Keeping Your Pets Safe During the Holidays in Greenville, SC
The same can be said for our four-legged family members.
Throughout the holidays, we have plenty of opportunities to connect with our pets and offer them an enjoyable experience. Yet, many dangers lurk during the holiday season, putting our pets at serious risk.
Be sure to consider the following safety tips to ensure that the entire family, especially your pets, can enjoy a safe and healthy holiday season.
Keeping Pets Safe When Holiday Guests Are Around
Whether you are having a big holiday bash, a small dinner party, or simply expecting some additional foot traffic through your home this holiday season, it is crucial to consider the well-being of your indoor pets. The excitement of having strangers around can be taxing on a pet. That's why it is essential to provide them with a quiet space where they can stay when guests are around.
It is also important to inform visitors that you have a pet and be sure to lay down any ground rules to keep your pet safe, especially if young children are visiting. That includes making sure that no one feeds your pet without your permission and letting them know which foods can be dangerous to your pet, including:
• candy (especially chocolate which is poisonous for cats, dogs, and ferrets)
• onion, garlic, chives, and leeks (which can be toxic to dogs and cats)
• citrus, seeds, and pits
• coffee grounds or beans
• raw/undercooked eggs
• raw/undercooked meats and fish
• raisins or grapes
• vegetable leaves or stems
If your pet is a known trash diver, you probably already keep your trash in a tightly sealed container out of your pet's reach. However, you'll want to be extra diligent when others are around who aren't aware of your pet's behavior.
Beware of the Hazards Posed by Holiday Decorations
Household pets face an increased risk of injury from holiday decorations. From holiday light strings for chewing to shiny glass ornaments for batting around, holiday decorations can cause serious harm to a pet. Other holiday items to be mindful of include:
• holiday greens and Christmas trees (chewing on limbs or ingesting needles can cause serious internal injuries)
• unattended candles
• seasonal plants such as poinsettias, mistletoe, ivy, and holly (all of which are toxic to some household pets)
Pets and Your Holiday Travel Plans
If you are planning to travel over the holiday season, consider your options carefully before bringing your pet along for the journey. A long car trip or an airplane ride can be incredibly stressful for some household pets.
When leaving your pets at home, be sure to hire an experienced Greenville pet sitter who can adequately care for your pet in your absence.
Regardless of where your pets spend the holiday, they should always wear collars with identification tags, and essential contact information should be nearby at all times, including:
• the nearest 24/7 veterinary clinic
• your own veterinarian (along with their holiday hours)
• the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center phone number (888-426-4435)
Helping Pets Remain Calm During Fireworks Displays
Fireworks displays are a staple of holiday celebrations in Greenfield, SC, especially around the new year. Unfortunately, fireworks can cause an incredible amount of stress for household pets. As a pet parent, keeping your four-legged besties as comfortable as possible during a nearby fireworks show is crucial. Here are some ways to help:
• provide your pet with safe spaces to hide (under furniture or in a quiet room)
• don't try and tempt them from their hiding place, as this can add additional stress
• keep them inside during fireworks displays
• makes sure they have proper identification or are microchipped in case they get outside and become disoriented or lost
• for smaller pets, cover their cages with blankets for soundproofing and comfort.
• provide ample bedding for burrowing animals
Indoor pets aren't the only animals that need comfort during fireworks displays. If you are a horse owner, there are a few excellent ways to keep your horse from getting spooked during fireworks, including ensuring that you provide them with plenty of hay because food can be an incredible distraction for horses. Also, be sure to leave the lights on to minimize the flashes of light that barn aminals will experience during a fireworks display, and consider playing some soothing music to drown out the noise.
No matter what type of pets you have, if you leave them home alone during a holiday trip, be aware of any planned fireworks displays and take precautions to keep your pet safe and sane in your absence. That may require hiring a pet sitter to stay overnight with your pet.
Providing a Safe and Healthy Holiday for Everyone
One thing is for sure; in Greenville, SC, we know how to celebrate the holidays. But, no matter your background or how you choose to spend the holiday season, a few minor adjustments and being conscious of your pet's specific needs will make a safe, happy, and healthy holiday possible for you, your family, and your pets.