We want the holidays to be a happy time for you and your cat, not a time for an emergency visit to your veterinarian. The food and decorations that make the holidays so much fun for us can be dangerous for your pet. We don’t want to dampen your holiday spirits, but we do want you to be aware of the dangers and plan carefully to avoid these potential hazards.
Foods you eat or drink that you should never give your cat:
Rich, fatty foods, like gravy or grease, can cause problems such as an upset stomach.
Alcohol can cause serious intoxication in pets, and many pets are attracted to the sweet taste of drinks, especially eggnog.
Chocolate, coffee, and tea all contain components called methylxanthines that are dangerous to animals. Chocolate is especially a problem because pets love its flavor. Unsweetened baking chocolate and dark chocolate are the worst culprits, but all chocolate, fudge and other candy should be placed out of your pet’s reach.
We enjoy the green foliage and colorful flowers of plants. Unfortunately, many of the plants we have in our homes during the holidays can be poisonous to pets. Never let your cat chew or eat any of these holiday plants:
- Holly • Mistletoe • Poinsettias • Hibiscus
Place your Christmas tree in a stable stand, and attach it securely to a window or wall. We’ve known others who have hung their tree from the ceiling! Consider using a spray to keep pets away, and make sure your cat is always supervised when in a room with a tree.
Tinsel’s shininess is attractive. When eaten, it can cause blockages, which often require surgery to remove.
Chewing on electrical cords can cause problems ranging from burned mouths, to electrical shock to death by electrocution. Unplug decorative lights when you’re not there.
Place ornaments that are shiny, or could be swallowed or broken, high up on your tree. Larger, less intriguing ornaments can go near the bottom.
Candy canes and gingerbread people can be as enticing to your pet as they are to children. Popcorn, raisins (can be toxic to cats), or cranberry garlands are beautiful, but can cause an obstruction when eaten.