Animals and the Holidays

 In W.O.D.

“It’s the hap-happiest season of all.Naholly

There’ll be parties for hosting

Marshmallows for toasting

And caroling out in the snow”

Don’t forget about much mistltoeing.

With a lot of parties and merrymaking people will often bring holiday bouquets. Don’t have a gift for that dinner party? No problem, poinsettias to the rescues in a festive pot.

As pet owners we need to be careful about how the holidays and our merrymaking can affect the furry and feathered members of our households.

A lot of poisonous plants are brought into our house. Holiday bouquets containing lilies, holly or mistletoe are not pet friendly. Even bouquets brought into the house by holiday guests should be thoroughly inspected, and kept away from pets. Lilies are the #1 flower often used by florists. Just one or two bites from a lily can result in severe acute kidney failure in cats.

Poinsettias are mildly toxic to cats. You may see mild signs of vomiting, drooling, or diarrhea if ingestion occurs.

Other yuletide pants such as holly berries, mistletoe, and rosemary can also be toxic to dogs and cats.

When Christmas or English holly is ingested, it can result in severe gastrointestinal (stomach) upset thanks to the spiny leaves and the potentially toxic substances in the plant (including saponins, methylxanthines, and cyanogens). If ingested, most dogs and cats lip smack, drool, and head shake excessively due to the mechanical injury from the spiny leaves.

As for mistletoe, most of us hang it high enough so it’s out of reach of our dogs and cats – nevertheless, it can also be toxic if ingested.  Mild signs of gastrointestinal irritation are seen, although if ingested in large amounts, collapse, hypotension, ataxia (walking drunk), seizures and death have also been reported.

November through January is a wonderful time of year, the family, friends, food and get togethers are all so fun. It is important however, to keep in mind that the beautiful plants and flowers of this time are not always pet friendly.

If you suspect that your pet had been poisoned, please take them to their vet or call 24/7 Animal Poison Control Center . 1-800-213-6680

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