Tips to keep your pet happy, healthy for the holidays - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Tips to keep your pet happy, healthy for the holidays

(KFVS) - You love your pets and want to include them in the holiday festivities, but there are some things to keep in mind to ensure your furry friend has a safe celebration.

The Animal Medical Center of Mid-America and the Humane Society wants to remind you that although it is tempting to feed your pet from your plate, human food can cause stomach upset or even severe problems. 
  • Avoid feeding them foods they are not used to. For example, if your pet is accustomed to eating chicken, that doesn't mean they can eat turkey. 
  • Baked goods or candy containing chocolate can be potentially lethal.
  • Poultry and ham bones can splinter or cause an obstruction of the throat, or even perforate the lining of their intestines.
  • Fat drippings from turkey are difficult for pets to handle and should not be given to them.
  • Pumpkin is a natural stool softener for cats and dogs and can cause diarrhea.
  • Make sure to secure your garbage so your pets don't go nibbling when you aren't aware.
  • Inform your guests of any house rules concerning food, so they don't slip your pet a treat. 
  • Also, make sure all gates and doors are secure. Too many animals are lost each year due to escaping from an opening. 
  • Poinsettias, mistletoe and other traditional holiday plants can be mildly toxic to animals. In addition, tinsel, ornaments and lights are choking hazards. Keep these well out of reach.
  • Consider keeping your pets in a safe, quiet are during celebrations. They can become overwhelmed and frightened in the unusual commotion of the holidays.
If your pet becomes ill, don't hesitate to call the Humane Society of Missouri's Animal Medical Center of Mid-America at 314 951-1534, or for after hours the St. Louis Animal Emergency Clinic. 

If you would like to make the holidays festive for your pet, consider serving their usual food in a festive dish, or buy them a seasonal toy or treat at one of the three Humane Society of Missouri's gift shops. All proceeds benefit the animals and are tax free. Call 314-951-1566 for more information.

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