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Pet Tips for The Holidays

thanksgiving_reminder_dogsAs the holidays arrive it is easy to look at your darling little pooch and think about giving them treats from the table or out of all the left overs.  We love our pets and tend to treat them like “people” sometimes and we have to remember their digestive system is different than that of a person and the foods we love and think of treats can be toxic to our four legged friends.

Here are some tips to consider:

PROVIDE SAVE HAVENS FOR PETS

During the chaos of the holidays with people coming and going, it’s a good idea to provide a safe “getaway” for your pet, far away from the noise, people and confusion, recommends the article, “Holiday Pet Safety.”This can be a room in your house where your pet won’t be disturbed but that has all of his favorite toys, a bed, food, water and a litter box for cats. If your pet is especially anxious around visitors, the article suggests boarding him for a few days to alleviate stress on him – and you.

DON’T FEED PETS TABLE SCRAPS

Like people, pets can gain weight during the holidays. Keep your pet on a regular feeding schedule and avoid giving your pet’s table scraps, which can wreak havoc on his system, cause diarrhea, and vomiting or add extra calories he doesn’t need. And, too much fatty food can also cause pancreatitis, says the Princeton Veterinary Hospital.

WATCH COUNTER SURFERS AND FOOD BANDITS

If a pet wants something, he’ll find a way to get it. During the holidays, there are all kinds of delicious – and toxic – things hanging around the house. Chocolate, uncooked bread yeast dough, macadamia nuts, onions, Xylitol and more can all cause big problems if your pet ingests them, says Dr. Jason Nicholas, author of “101 Essential Tips You Need to Raise a Happy, Healthy, Safe Dog.” Be diligent.

KNOW WHO TO CALL

Be prepared! says Dr. Marty Becker in his article, “Have a Safe and Stress-Free Holiday Season.”  He advises, “Call your veterinarian’s office and ask for information about who will be handling emergencies during the holidays. Then stick that information on your refrigerator, along with the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center phone number. It’s available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, at 888-426-4435 (for a fee).”