Pet safety tips during the holidays

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NEGAUNEE, Mich. (WJMN) – Dr. Cheri Shevy a veterinarian at Negaunee Veterinary Clinic says that the most common issue caused by holiday festivities is vomiting and Diarrhea.

She says it’s because they may be getting foods they aren’t used to and foods higher in fat.

“If your dog or cat is only 10 pounds and you give it a handful that’s like you eating a few plates full,” said Shevy. “So they don’t realize how much they’ve given and that sudden change in diet can really make a difference.”

Another issue that has increased this year, she says is dogs eating bread dough. The dough can expand in their stomach and cause issues.

“You’ve got to be careful if you’re making bread,” said Shevy. “Eating bread dough and then it starts to expand, yeast, things like that, I just read an article that that was the pet poison control line that was two of their most common ones that they had over the pandemic as far as an increase in calls for yeast and bread dough.”

Other common foods that she says are toxic for animals are sugar-free candies and gums with xylitol in them, garlic and onions. Dr. Shevy says Christmas trees can also pose a danger to pets. Tinsel on a tree can be tempting to a cat but dangerous for their digestive system.

“Tinsel, you’ve got to be careful with cats, in particular, can end up eating that and then have to go in surgically after it and sometimes it’s too late even for that because it winds up the gut in a ball and it’s not good,” said Shevy.

Some small dogs could also eat tinsel or small ribbons. Additionally, they should be kept from drinking the water from a live Christmas tree. Dr. Shevy recommends covering it with tin foil to prevent them from getting into it. She also says that being mindful of the weather before pets spend time outside is also important.

“We’ve had a milder year and remember that if it’s you know 35 degrees and raining and your dog or cat is outside that’s oftentimes more dangerous than if it’s 20 degrees and snowing,” said Shevy. “If they’re wet they’re not going to be holding in warmth.”

She says if it’s a rainy Christmas season pets may be more likely to get frostbitten paws and be cold. If it’s rainy and cold she says to keep them indoors. Dr. Shevy also says to prevent animals from biting extension cords or christmas light cords.

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