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Holiday Safety for Pets

December 15, 2014

As the holidays approach, many of us are anticipating taking some time off to enjoy the company of our friends and family members, savor some of that delicious holiday food, and basically rewind, reflect and reset. When it comes to our furry family members, however, the holiday season does bring some very specific dangers. In this article from your local vet clinic Ashburn, you’ll read about some of the seasonal hazards that can be dangerous for your beloved pet.

Seasonal Decorations

We all know what happens when a frisky feline spots a Christmas tree. Our feline friends have a long history of climbing and scratching trees. They are cats’ natural scratching posts, and also served Kitty as a way to escape predators in the wild. That, combined with all those dangling ornaments and glittering tinsel, make Christmas trees pretty irresistible to adventurous kitties. Secure the tree top to the wall or ceiling with fishing line, and use a very sturdy base. As for Fido, he is much less inclined to climbing trees, but he may try to eat some of your decorations, so don’t give him free access to any decorations.

Heat and Light Sources

Scented candles, fireplaces, potpourri, and woodstoves are all part of the holiday season for many people. Be sure to place candles where your pets can’t reach them, and use tall glass candleholders so that flames are enclosed. Fireplaces should also be grated at all times.


Fireworks are often part of New Year’s celebrations. We may think they’re pretty and exciting, but to your dog, the loud noises can be very frightening. Sadly, many dogs get scared and run away during fireworks displays. Keep Fido safely inside during New Year’s celebrations.


Poinsettias are traditionally given around the holiday season. These beautiful red flowers are very toxic to pets, however, so if you display any poinsettias, mistletoe, or holly berry, be very sure to only put them where your furry friend can’t reach them.


Lots of our furkids get some extra special treats at this time of year. Be sure not to give your pet anything that has been seasoned with garlic, onion, chives, scallions, avocado, or chocolate, as these things are all very dangerous for pets.


Antifreeze is high on the list of seasonal hazards for pets. Antifreeze is very toxic to pets, and unfortunately is also very appealing to them, tastewise. Keep Fido and Fluffy out of the garage or driveway, and clean up any spills immediately.

We here at your local vet clinic Ashburn want to wish all of you a safe and happy holiday season!