How To Keep Your Animals Happy And Well – Forbes Advisor UK

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, but pet owners need to be especially vigilant during these days full of pine needles and eggnog.

Linnaeus Veterinary Group warns pet owners to be aware of Christmas dangers that could lead to an emergency trip to the vet for their animals over the holiday period.

Christmas can present many potential problems for pets, says Dr. Simon Hayes, veterinary surgeon and medical director of Primary Care at Linnaeus, as homes are decorated for the season and a tempting array of foods is often left behind.

The drink can also be dangerous – and traditional Christmas favorites, such as cream liqueur – can be especially frustrating for animals.

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Christmas Minefield

Dr. Hayes says: “Christmas can present a bit of a minefield for pet owners. For example, dogs will drink most alcohol left in cups, so people need to be careful about leaving drinks where their animals can easily reach them.

“If this occurs, the signs of ethanol poisoning are similar to those in humans — vomiting, depression, lack of coordination, confusion and drowsiness. Dogs with these conditions need warmth, rehydration, and immediate nursing care.”

Food items that should be on pet owners’ radars include grapes, raisins, currants, and raisins, which can cause kidney failure in dogs and cats, along with macadamia nuts, raw onions, and foods like walnuts, bread and cheese, which can cause kidney failure in dogs and cats. All are harmful.

Other items that pose a danger to pets include ribbons on gifts, decorations, sharp tree needles, low fairy lights, chestnuts, and chocolates, which are often one of the most common reasons for a trip to the vets.

The experts at Pets4Homes note some other hidden dangers:

Blue cheese is rich and greasy and will likely pass through your dog. Such cheese can contain blue mold, known as Rocfortin C, which is a mycotoxin, or mycotoxin, which is not present in large enough quantities to pose a danger to people, but can affect dogs severely. Keep all dirty dishes out of your dog’s reach and avoid having any snacks under the table.

Homemade dough treats contain a concentration of salt that makes them toxic to dogs and can lead to salt poisoning, which can be fatal. Keep your dog safe by placing these trinkets high up on a tree or completely out of the dog’s reach.

Many gifts and trinkets require disposable batteries, and some dogs consider them edible or a chew toy. This is very dangerous and can lead to many different problems, from internal blockages to lead poisoning to acid burns. Keep batteries out of the dog’s reach.

Other festive items that can cause harm include plants such as mistletoe, poinsettia, holly and ivy, which can all cause an upset stomach, while lilies can be very harmful to cats.

Beware of overindulgence

And just because overeating is the norm for many of us at Christmas, that doesn’t translate for pets. “Avoid overfeeding your pet,” says Dr. Tammy King, animal behavior specialist at Mars Petcare. “We all love to overeat during the holiday season, but some foods, especially those that are high in fat like sausage, ham, cheese, and butter Creams can be a major concern for pets if they are fed in large quantities and may lead to pancreatitis.

“Keep foods out of reach to prevent them from stealing the turkey before the big day and ending up at the vet with serious medical concerns. Always keep contact details for an emergency vet at the ready during vacation.”

Not only what a pet may consume is what needs to be considered when it comes to its general well-being, notes Dr. King: “Festive time generally means changes in the home – think of the Christmas tree, lights, decorations, music, as well as the hustle and bustle of the family home can It can cause disturbances in some pets.

“Relieve any stress your pets may be feeling by respecting their space, and allowing them to have a quiet area to retreat to, if they wish, such as a comfortable den/cage/bed for your dog in another room, or a raised enclosed space with a comfortable bed for your cat “.

“Let your pet choose if he wants to interact with people. Don’t force interactions. Pay attention to pets’ body language. Learn what your pet might be trying to tell you by their body posture, sounds, and/or facial expressions.”

“Many people like to wear new clothes for their pets during the holiday season, but this can be inconvenient and distressing for many pets. Instead, leave your pet with a long-lasting chew, or a toy when you plan to go outside, so they have something fun to do him in your absence.”

keep the routine

It is also important to maintain a familiar routine and give the pet the amount of attention and affection it is used to. Dr. King adds: “Keep on regular walks, meals and play sessions. Take time to interact with your pet and make them feel special.

“If you are traveling with your pet, consider their needs and possessions. Bring enough food and any medication, as well as familiar things like toys and bedding.”

Dr. Hayes adds: “Christmas can often be a very busy and chaotic time. You can help your pet cope with the chaos by sticking to his regular routine, and if you are spending Christmas Day with the family away from home, by taking your pet with something What is familiar to help him feel safe.”

The social component can be particularly challenging for cats. “Not all cats feel comfortable in a lot of people, and not all cats will enjoy more attention,” says Claire Besant, CEO of International Cat Care. “If you know your cat is anxious or afraid, think ahead and provide places to get away from everyone, which It can be a haven until normal life returns.

“Make this available before people arrive, so the cat knows where she can go. Provide extra litter trays if needed so the cat doesn’t have to venture in or through crowded areas to get to the tray or her food.

“If you don’t, the cat may find a place where it feels safe to urinate or defecate – which may not be common.”

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cat festive

When it comes to cats and Christmas, Ms Besant says she needs to stay safe and happy: “For safety, we consider having poisonous plants or berries in the home, dangerous toys or toys, or foods that might cause harm.

“Cats will probably eat much less chocolate or raisins, which can be very dangerous for a greedy dog, but if you know you have a cat who loves unusual food, you know you need to be a little careful.

Cats are more likely to climb the Christmas tree, pull it down or remove decorations, so it may be wise to leave the most breakable decorations or put them high. Berries that seem too attached to shows during the holiday can dry out and fall off and become something to play with, so just check and clean them up.

Likewise, gifts often come with packages that contain silica or may be filled with shimmering, shimmering pieces of aluminum foil that kittens can devour.

“If you are considering what is dangerous to infants and young children, consider it carefully for your cat. Keep in mind that cats can climb into areas that may be outside of children. Consider age, activity level, and how tempting a curious cat might be.”

current tension

Whether or not a pet makes a good Christmas gift is a baffling issue, but experts generally oppose the idea. Dr. King says, “I am against buying pets as Christmas gifts, especially if the gift recipient has no idea what they are going to get. A pet is a huge commitment that requires careful consideration by potential pet parents.”

Bill Lambert, health and well-being expert at The Kennel Club says: “Buying a puppy is a huge decision and all potential owners should do proper research and make all the facts available so they can make an informed decision.

We know that there is an increased demand for puppies during the pandemic. The current mismatch between supply and demand could lead to more people being deceived by fraudulent and fraudulent breeders, inadvertently fueling low-income breeders.”

Data from the government confirms this:

  • Less than half (43%) of dog or cat owners in the UK have personally visited the seller at the animal’s home when researching their pet purchases recently.
  • More than 1 in 10 (12%) pet buyers have done no research at all before visiting a puppy or kitten for the first time.
  • Less than a third (31%) of dog and cat owners feel very confident in their ability to spot signs of poor puppy or cat seller welfare.

In addition, a survey conducted by the British Veterinary Association (BVA) and the British Veterinary Nursing Association (BVNA) found that nearly two-thirds (68%) of pet owners were unaware that clinical and behavioral signs of their pets might be associated with low-welfare breeding. practices.

Prof Christine Middlemes, the government’s chief veterinary officer, says: “Christmas can be a difficult time to settle a pet into a new home, and it is very important for people to not only look for the breed of animals they want, but also the person to sell them to them.

Puppies and kittens raised in substandard conditions of care can often be separated from their mothers too soon, which can lead to severe health and behavioral problems, heart pain and high veterinary bills for their new family. We urge people to be vigilant and to always research pet sellers comprehensively before calling.”

The government urges people not to buy pets as gifts

The government is running a “Don’t Catch Pets” campaign to urge the public not to buy pets at Christmas and, in any case, to check the seller for legality and that the animal is not the product of a puppy farm or illegal trade.

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