Christmas Tree Pet Safety – Tips and Safety Precautions — December 1, 2012


Here are some 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 but 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.  Pet 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 a 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.

8. Presents.

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.  Pets that continue to bother the tree should be rewarded for playing away from the tree.  Bitter apple spray can be sprayed on low branches for persistent chewers.

Thanks to for the above tips.  Hope that this helps you 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

December 1, 2012 at 10:00 am Leave a comment

National Animal Shelter Appreciation Month – November 1, 2012

Several things I would like to bring to your attention this month.  November is National Animal Shelter appreciation month.  We have a  new shelter in Virginia Beach and the management and staff do an excellent job.  It is a great place to volunteer.

November is also, adopt a Senior Pet Month.  It is much harder to find homes for Senior pets, yet they make the greatest pets ever.  If you are thinking about adopting a new family member, please consider a senior pet.

As the weather turns colder there are a few safety reminders I would like to share.  We will be using our fireplaces more, be sure that you have a screen , so tails and feet don’t catch on fire.

Leave your dogs coats longer in the winter it gives them extra insulation it helps to keep them warmer.  Check paws after walks and outside adventures, to make sure there is no ice or chemicals stuck to their paws.  If you must use salt on your sidewalks, use Safe-Paws or kitty litter or sand.

Remember dogs and cats do better without Thanksgiving dinner.

If you feel you must give them something special for Thanksgiving perhaps a special treat. Not Turkey or human food.

It is time to make those Pet Sitting Reservations for Thanksgiving and Christmas.  We book up quickly and will fill our schedule on a first come first serve basis.  Please contact us at 301-7384 or email as soon as you know your dates.

Looking forward to being able to help you with your plans.

Joan, Jill and Ashley

November 1, 2012 at 8:00 am Leave a comment

Adopt a Shelter Dog Month – October 1, 2012

October  has a few pet holidays.

The one that stands out to me is ADOPT A SHELTER DOG MONTH! Since both my dogs, Mikey and Missy came from a shelter or a Rescue Group. Rescued pets seem to be grateful for their new homes and all the love and attention that they receive.

The first week of October is Animal Welfare Week. We ask that you make a donation to your favorite local group of Animals Rescuers. The first week is also National Walk Your Dog Week. This is not only good for your pet but for you.

October is National Pet Wellness month.  If you have been putting off that annual visit to the vet, now might be a good time to make that appointment.

October 27 is National Pit Bull Awareness Day.

Remember to keep all that Halloween candy out of the reach of your pets.  Chocolate can be deadly to your dog.

The Thanksgiving and Christmas Holidays will be here before we know it.  If you will be needing our services for these holidays, just a reminder to make your reservations as soon as you know, as we book up quickly.

Have a great month

Joan, Jill and Ashley

October 1, 2012 at 4:50 pm Leave a comment

Celebrate September with your Pet – September 1, 2012

September has a good selection of pet holidays.

September is National Disaster Awareness Month.  Hopefully, this is something that you have thought about and have an emergency kit packed for both yourself and your pets.  If you need additional information, please contact us and we can furnish you with a list of what you need for your pets evacuation kits.

September 9th is National Pet Memorial Day.  It is a time to remember the dogs and cats that have been such an important part of our lives.

September 23rd Dogs in Politics Day in recognition of politicians dogs.

September 24th – 28th is Deaf Pet Awareness Week. Just a reminder … special needs pets need good homes as well as healthy ones.

September 28th is World Rabies Day.  Just a reminder how important it is to have your pets vaccinated for rabies for their safety and yours.

Just a quick reminder that if you are planning on going out of town for Thanksgiving and Christmas, the sooner you make your reservations, the better.

September 1, 2012 at 12:41 pm Leave a comment

August Holiday Awareness – August 01, 2012

We have a couple of important holidays in the month of August

The first is International Homeless Pet Day August 15th, And National Dog Day is August 28th.

We would like to stress this month the importance of adopting a homeless pet for your next addition to your family,

The staff at All Critter Pet Sitting does not just preach adopting rescued animal but we do practice what we preach.

Myself, Joan, I have 7 cats they are all rescued from either a rescue group such as Hope for Life or from Animal Control.  One, was rescued before she was actually taken to Animal Control,  My two dogs were gotten from K-9 New Life and Animal Control.

Jill and Ashley have three cats all rescues .  Two dogs, one of which was rescued from North Carolina and two horses one a rescue and one miniature.

If you need help locating a new pet do not hesitate to call us and we will help you anyway we can.

Adopting a shelter or rescued cat or dog is literally saving a life,  Adopting  a pet from a shelter or rescue group is saving that animal from  euthanasia.

80% of the animals in shelter are there because of a change in living situation (i.e. move to an apartment that does not allow pets) a change in family situation, (I.e. a new baby) and others are surrendered to a shelter or rescue because their owners have died or is too ill to care for them any longer.  A minority have been surrendered because bad behavioral problems.  They are just victims of circumstances.  Most dogs are  potty trained and have basic behavioral training.

My two are just perfect Mikey I gor from K-9 New Life and he was in a foster home with other dogs.  He was very lonely and I was able to find Missy at the Virginia Beach Animal Control and they are a perfect match.  Many are already spayed or neutered or the group will help you and make sure that  service is made available to you.  Most require that you have it done.

We encourage you to come down to the Shelter or SPCA see what is available.  If you do not find your new life long friend on your first trip, Come back the following week.  Pets change on a weekly basis.

August 1, 2012 at 9:00 am Leave a comment

Safety Summer Tips for Pet Owners – July 01, 2012

Just as heat and sun can affect humans, our pets are at the same risk.  As pet parents, we must provide our animals with proper care to ensure their health and safety during scorching days of summer.  It’s important to familiarize yourself with the warning signs and know how to treat heat-related problems effectively.

Apply sunscreen to light skinned and light furred dogs.  Areas around their mouth and ears can still get sunburned..

Always provide your pet with fresh clean water during those hot summer days.

If you are taking your pet somewhere always use a leash.  This gives you better control and keeps them from getting into something harmful.

If you pet is outside make sure there is shade for them to get out of the sun.

Overheating in pets, includes heavy panting, difficulty breathing, drooling and weakness.

Never leave your animal alone in a parked car, even for a few minutes.

Give your pet a trim, cutting pet thick hair can help prevent it from overheating during hot summer months.  Do not shave, leave enough fur to protect the pets skin from the sun’s harmful rays.

During extreme heat avoid walking your dog on concrete or asphalt.  It can burn the pads of their paws.

Be sure all vaccinations are up to date.

Also if you are going somewhere  there will be fireworks, leave your pet at home.

Enjoy your summer and stay cool

July 1, 2012 at 2:51 pm Leave a comment

Hug Your Cat Day – May 1, 2012

May is a busy month for Pet Celebrations.

The first week of May is National Pet Week as well and Be Kind to Animals Week.

May 3 is National Disabled Pets Day.

May 13-19 is National Dog Bite Prevention Week.

May 30 is Hug Your Cat Day.


Things we learn from a Cat

Sleep does the body good.
Comfort is highly overrated.
Baroque music is soothing to the soul and silence is golden.
Getting your back scratched is one of life’s greatest pleasures.
You learn when you explore; after all, the world is your oyster.
Stretching after a nap is highly recommended.
Showing no expression makes us appear less judgmental.
You can learn a great deal by being a good listener.
Don’t hesitate to give affection to those you love.
Your crap should be covered at all times.
Even if you’re smarter than everyone else, there’s no need to let it show.
Never worry about what others think of you.
It’s best to live life on your own terms.
When you go out on a limb, try to land on your feet.
Attitude is everything.
Even if you’re just a a kitten, see yourself as a lion.
Independence is wonderful and so is companionship.
A wide-eyed, innocent look helps to get anything you ask for.
Purring is an excellent way to show appreciation.

Thanks to Debra Wier & Puddin for this poem!

May 1, 2012 at 1:05 pm Leave a comment

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