Copyright MIGMartin 2013

Pet Dog, Copyright MIGMartin 2013

The winter season is in full swing and many of us are bringing life indoors; placing holly on the mantle, mistletoe in every doorway, a poinsettia in the hall, and most of all the grand Christmas tree in the living room corner. Yes, all the trimmings that make us feel warm and cozy during these icy days. Unfortunately, for those of us that have fur babies running around our home, these beautiful decorations are harmful to our pets’ health.

Mistletoe and holly are toxic to dogs, cats, and horses. If ingested pets may experience diarrhea, vomiting, and erratic behaviors including but not limited to depression. Mistletoe may also result in gastrointestinal disorders. Another plant to be cautious about is the poinsettia plant. Although thought to be extremely toxic to both dogs and cats, it is only mildly toxic. The sap of the plant can be irritating to the mouth and stomach sometimes causing vomiting.

Christmas trees are a common favorite that many of us put many hours and thoughts into planning our perfect design. Whether artificial or live there are some hazards to our fur babies. Evergreen trees are mildly toxic and the needles and sap can be irritating to the mouth and stomach causing excessive drooling and vomiting. If a large amount is ingested it can cause gastrointestinal obstruction or puncture. If you decided on a live tree that will need to be watered keep in mind that stagnant plant water can be a breeding ground for harmful bacteria. any preservatives or fertilizers that have been added may cause nausea and diarrhea a well.

Christmas Tree, copyright Jackietrains 2014

Christmas Tree, copyright Jackietrains 2014

As these winter days are briskly passing by, we need not to forget our fur babies. A few simple tips for preventing any mishaps this holiday season are to use a skirt or cloth to cover your tree stand, keep any and all needles picked up out of your pets reach and always hang your Mistletoe in the middle of your doorway! Please remember our fur babies depend on us. Have a safe and joyous holiday. God bless.

Audrey Lohrey
Audies Angels
Pet Care