Pet safety at Christmas

What precautions should you take to make sure your pets are safe at Christmas?

Nobody wants to be phoning their pet insurance provider during the festive season - so make sure the furrier members of your family enjoy all the lights and fuss just as much as you.Dog

But keeping pets safe during Christmas can be a difficult task - ornaments, lights, presents and the tree are all toys and climbing posts in disguise.

Christmas tree

Put your tree in a corner and make sure the base is secure - climbing cats and a wobbly tree don't mix. Keep any glass or fragile ornaments safely above paw level, too.

You should think about covering the base of your tree - the water can contain preservatives that are lethal to animals. If you've got a real tree, sweep away pine needles regularly.

If these do get in your pet's paw it could become infected, so don't take any risks and visit the vet.

If you've got a penchant for tinsel make sure it's hung out of your pet's reach - if eaten it can block their intestines, which could mean emergency surgery.

The same goes for lights - curious teeth and electric wires don't mix.

Lights and candles

Electrical leads should be taped out of the way and covered up if possible - they can easily be confused for toys!

Make sure candles are out of reach, too - cats could easily knock them over.


Did you know that holly, mistletoe, and poinsettia plants are poisonous to dogs and cats? Keep these out of reach of animals and make sure any berries are swept up.Cat


Seasonal food like chocolate, grapes, and raisins are all hazardous to dogs, so don't treat them this Christmas.

You might want to involve your dog or cat in Christmas as much as possible, but feeding them leftovers might be a step too far - turkey bones can become lodged in the animal's throat or damage their intestinal tract.

Find out other things you shouldn't feed your pet.

Walks and attention

In all the excitement pets can be forgotten - make sure your dog's walks aren't disrupted and your cat gets lots of attention. Let's face it - you'll probably need to get out of the house for a brisk stroll just as much as your canine friend.

Also remember rodents and other pets - don't let cleaning routines fall by the wayside.

If you're going away at Christmas, check you can take your dog, or arrange for alternative care with a family member


Bones, scratching posts and chew toys all go down well at Christmas.

Make sure any packaging from presents is disposed of and animals are given space to play with their new toys away from the human-dominated hubbub. Read Covered mag to find some inspired gifts for your pets.

If you're going away at Christmas, check you can take your dog, or arrange for alternative care with a family member, friend or kennel whilst you're away.

By Emily Bater