From a Labrador who devoured an entire block of stilton, six mince pies, a Christmas pudding and a box of chocolates to a one year old kitten who scorched her paws and burnt her tongue on fairy lights, Christmas can be a potentially dangerous time for pets.
Although those pets made a full recovery as a result of prompt action from their owners, Vets Now are warning pet lovers not to miss some of the more unusual hazards in the home this Christmas.
The warning comes as the emergency out-of-hours pet service revealed they receive a 788 per cent increase in chocolate poisoning cases alone over Christmas Day and Boxing Day.
Beware of unexpected dangers
Dave Leicester, Head of Clinical Intelligence, Vets Now said, “As a nation of pet lovers we all want to make sure our cherished companions join in with family Christmas celebrations, but at such a busy time of year for families, it’s easy to overlook the many hazards which can put them at risk of injury or illness.
“We are encouraging pet owners not to let treats turn into treatment.
“There are well-known dangers – such as chocolate and raisins – that could put your pet at risk this Christmas, but many pet owners might not be aware of the more unexpected dangers that could see you spending your Christmas in the pet emergency room.”
The most harmful festive hazards
Five and half million dog owners unknowingly feed their pets harmful foods at Christmas, so to avoid any health emergencies Vets Now reveal the top 10 festive hazards to be on the look out for this Christmas.
- Chocolate – Chocolate contains a stimulant called theobromine, a bit like caffeine, that’s severely poisonous to cats and dogs
- Mince pies and Christmas puddings – All grapes, raisins, currants and sultanas are toxic to dogs, as are foods that contain them
- Blue cheese – It contains a substance called roquefortine C which dogs are extremely sensitive to
- Tinsel – Dogs eat tinsel like we eat spaghetti causing dangerous blockages in their stomachs
- Macadamia nuts – Often found in cookies, or just as a Christmas snack, these nuts cause severe illness in dogs.
- Garlic, chives and onion – These are found in many foods, such as gravy, stuffing and sausages. All Allium species are poisonous to dogs
- Snow globes – Imported versions can contain antifreeze, as little as one tablespoon can be fatal for a cat
- Candles – They can burn paws and the curious noses of our furry friends, and fall over when brushed against
- Fairy lights – Cats are curious and will try to chew on anything, including fairy lights that can burn them and wires which can electrocute them
- Alcohol – This can cause severe liver and brain damage. As little as a tablespoon can lead to problems for your cat or dog