Did you know a staggering 100,000 dogs die from riding in truck beds per year? This terrible and preventable number of deaths does not include any other pet deaths from collisions or any other lack of pet safety on the road.
During the holidays, many people enjoy traveling with their pets in tow. After all, it wouldn’t be a proper getaway without our best fur baby friends.
Just as your safety is essential on the road, knowing how to transport your pets to your vacation spot is necessary. Likewise, it is equally important to understand how to keep them safe during your holiday festivities.
What foods are safe? What scents will cause them harm? What spices could poison them? Do they interact with unknown people well?
Below we have a list of pet safety advice for this holiday season and the rest of your “furever” friend’s life.
During dinner, pets get curious and excited about all the smells filling the room. Your beloved fur baby walks over and nudges your leg and gives you that sweet-talking stare. You look down with adoration, pick up a few pieces of chicken scraps, and feed them this snack.
The reality is, chicken by itself is ok for meat-eating pets. However, there are many seasonings and some vegetables which are harmful to them. Everyday items such as onions and salt can be poisonous.
Candy such as chocolate and other sweets containing Xylitol is toxic to cats, dogs, and ferrets. You should keep citric acid foods from your pets. If enough is consumed, pits and seeds like cherry pits, apple seeds, and peach pits can cause issues within your pet’s nervous system.
Grapes and raisins can cause kidney problems in pets. Certain nuts can prove to be problematic as well.
Our pets are not humans and shouldn’t consume the foods we are capable of eating. Just because we can doesn’t mean they can. You could be poisoning your pet unaware while sharing your yummy dinner.
Taking your sweet fur friends with you on your vacation will bring so much joy if you enter the trip with some holiday season pet safety tips.
Before leaving your home, be sure to have your pet up to date on their vaccinations to prevent any sickness from parks or other animal encounters.
Make sure your pet has a collar on with ID tags that identify you as their owner and a way to reach you, should your pet become separated.
If you are driving to your destination, keep your pet in a safe travel crate and buckle it in. The back seat is the safest place for the container in case of an accident.
Keep your pet’s head in the car. Not only can debris cause harm, but if the air is cold enough, your pet could catch a cold or worse.
Be sure to stop frequently for your pet to eliminate and exercise some of that energy out. Never let your pet leave the car or RV without a leash, collar, and ID tag.
Car and RV pet safety suggest you never leave your pet in a vehicle alone without air conditioning or heat, depending on the climate you’re traveling. Remember, even if the temperature feels like a pleasant 72 degrees Fahrenheit, the temperatures inside your vehicle can reach up to 116 degrees within an hour.
Air travel can be especially hazardous for pets with brachycephalic faces, such as bulldogs, pugs, or Persian cats. They are vulnerable to oxygen deprivation and heat stroke due to their short nasal passages.
If possible, avoid cargo and transport your pet in the cabin with you. Most airlines allow smaller breeds to travel with you inside the airplane cabin for a fee.
The fun parts of the holidays are the parties and getting together with friends and family. Unfortunately, parties with many people or even just a handful of people can overwhelm some pets. They may get defensive or territorial of their space.
Keeping your pets inside your home during your festivities is vital unless you live in a tropical climate and winter temperatures are not a danger. Giving your pet a separate, quiet room with lots of toys to play with will help ease your pet’s stress levels. You could even utilize a crate in a different room to help prevent barking.
Be sure to let your friends and family know before the gathering that you have a pet. It would benefit them to understand how to approach your home without provoking your pet to fear or anger.
So Many Smells and Pretty Things
Essential staples during the holiday season are different types of decorations. Beautiful lights twinkle, ornaments sparkle, and our counters house fantastic holiday arrangments to ring in the season. But, while these are pretty items, we like to look at and not touch, it is an entirely different world for our pets.
Typical cats, ferrets, and dogs are tempted to chew on, bat a paw, and play with all these pretty things. So not only is it something that can frustrate you as the owner of those beautiful holiday decorations, but it can be hazardous for your pet.
If you choose to deck the halls with lots of pretty items this year, choose some pet-friendly items such as wooden or plastic ornaments. Try to keep centerpieces securely fastened to the surface using double-sided tape or sticky foam.
As a rule of thumb, stay away from glass items and provide your pet with fun alternatives.
Keep Your Pet Safety Guide
Overall, this pet safety advice will keep your best friend healthy and happy through this holiday season.
Every pet gets curious, excited, and sometimes anxious during the human festivities. Keeping them safe is essential for the best and most memorable season yet.
For more pet safety advice, come back and visit our blog. We love pets, especially pets who need a “furever” home.