November 23, 2011 at 8:44 pm Leave a comment

Tips and safety precautions to go over before putting up your Christmas tree to make it pet safe and friendly.

1. Choose the right spot.
Pick an area where the tree can be enjoyed by the family but remains out of heavy traffic. A lot of activity near the tree can result in accidentally knocking it over. An area by a wall or in a corner is ideal, especially one which is out of the traffic flow pattern of the house. Try to place the tree near an outlet so you don’t have to run electrical cords long distances.

2.Prepare the area.
If you have a live tree, you might need to use some extra precautions. Lay down plastic sheeting or put a “tree bag” before setting it up. This is an extra large trash bag used for live trees. Center the tree on the bag. When the season is over and you have removed the ornaments, pull the bag over the tree. This will catch the pine needles as they fall from the tree-and prevent them from being chewed or swallowed by your pet.

3. Secure the tree.
Many trees have been sent swaying by a rambunctious puppy, or the cat deciding to climb the tree. Dogs can knock over a tree by rubbing against or playing under it. Pets can be injured if the tree or ornaments fall and break. You can place the tree in a corner and secure it from two sides to small hooks in the walls. Another trick is to place a small hook in the ceiling above the tree and use clear fishing line from the top of the tree to the hook. Apply gentle tension and tie. The clear line is invisible. While you’re at it, make sure that the base of the tree is firmly secured and does not wobble.

4. Hide the cords.
Electrical cords are a grave danger to pets-especially puppies and dogs that tend to chew on anything. Cords can cause electrocution and serious injury or even death. Secure the cords by positioning them higher than the pet can reach or hiding them with special covers.

5. No hooks.
Check your ornaments and replace hooks with a loop of string tied in a knot. Ornaments often fall from the tree and pets may catch their mouths on or swallow the hooks.

6. Choose safe ornaments.
There is no perfectly pet-safe ornament, as any ornament can be ingested and cause an intestinal obstruction. Pet “safer” ornaments would be plastic or wood. Glass ornaments on the lower limbs can be especially dangerous. If broken, pets can step on them and cut their feet. Worse yet, they can even treat the ornaments like and ball and chew on them causing them to break and result in mouth or throat trauma and bleeding. Many pet owners have learned the hard way not to place any ornaments on the lower limbs. Ornaments made of food may be especially attractive to pets, so beware of popcorn garland and similar treats.

7. Ribbons
Big red velvet ribbons are a lovely addition to a holiday home. They’re also safer replacement for the tinsel and garland that can be eaten by dogs and cats and get caught in their intestine. Cats are especially attracted to the bright shiny tinsel, so it should really be avoided in households with cats. Ingestion of this material can cause intestinal obstruction that may require surgery.

Dogs love to investigate and most don’t understand that the presents are not meant to be opened ahead of time. Gifts can be destroyed by a playful pet, and the decorative wrappings swallowed. Consider storing presents in a safe area until right before the holiday or make sure you pet is always supervised while investigating and searching for his special gift.

9.Sweep and Water
Sweep up the pine needles. Ingestion of needles can cause vomiting and gastric irritation. Keep the tree watered and only turn on the lights when you are at home. There is always a risk of fire with a live tree, so take extra precautions. Do not allow your pet access to the tree water, as drinking it can make them ill.

10. Supervise
The safest thing to do is to allow your pet access to the tree only when supervised. Bitter apple spray can be sprayed on low branches for persistent chewers.

Thanks to for the above tips. Hope that this helps your have and Safe and Merry Christmas.

We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all of our valued clients for allowing us to help you with your Pet Sitting needs and look forward to being of service to you in the coming year,

Joan, Jill and Ashley

Entry filed under: Monthly Newsletter.

Tricks for Making Halloween a Treat for your Pets – October 1, 2011 Happy New Year 2012 – January 1, 2012

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