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Pet poison hazards during the holidays

By Staff | Dec 16, 2016

Amid the busyness of the holiday season, don’t forget the importance of your pet’s safety. Pet owners should pet-proof their home, especially with the changes holidays bring. The West Virginia Poison Center recommends keeping the following items up and away from your pets:

Holiday treats-During the holidays there may be a variety of food and treats in your home that are not typically available to your pets. It is best not to feed your pets anything out of their normal diet. Be especially careful of foods that contain grapes or raisins, macadamia nuts, or chocolate, especially dark chocolate and baking cocoa. Also, do not feed your animals raw bread dough or sugar free gum or candy that contain xylitol.

Plants-There are many common holiday plants that may be poisonous to your pets. Although poinsettias have a bad reputation of being poisonous, they are actually only mildly toxic. Much more worrisome are lilies, holly, and mistletoe. Christmas trees are also only mildly toxic. However, if additives are put in the Christmas tree water, these products may be more of a concern. Christmas tree needles and tinsel, although not poisonous, can cause physical injuries to your pets.

Alcohol-Alcohol can affect pets much quicker than an adult human. Therefore, it is important to never allow your pet to consume alcohol. Although most people do not give pets alcohol, many people do not think about holiday cakes soaked in alcohol, such as rum cake, or holiday presents wrapped under the tree, such as bottles of alcohol, cologne, or aftershave.

Medications-While most pet owners are careful with their medications around their pets, be mindful of holiday visitors who may have medicine in their suitcases or purses. These items are easy for pets to find and get into, especially if pills are stored in a plastic bag or pill minder.

Although most people think of the West Virginia Poison Center handling human poisonings, the West Virginia Poison Center cares about your pets and works to help keep them safe. . Save the West Virginia Poison Center’s number in your cell phone in case of any poison emergency. 1-800-222-1222.

About the West Virginia Poison Center:

The West Virginia Poison Center provides comprehensive emergency poison information, prevention and educational resources to West Virginians 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. The WVPC is staffed by nurses, pharmacists and physicians with special training in treatment of poisonings. Located in Charleston, WV, the WVPC is a part of the West Virginia University-Charleston Division and located next to CAMC Memorial Hospital. Toll-free:1-800-222-1222. Website:www.wvpoisoncenter.org.