It is the time of joy! With the holiday season just around the corner, it’s time to untangle the holiday lights, reunite with family, and eat an embarrassing amount of delicious food.
However, as you jingle your bells, bake your Christmas cookies, and put your tree in, it’s important to know what delicious holiday foods pose a danger to our furry friends.
Human food is for humans
Hmm, Christmas food … Roast turkey, cod, ham, romeritos, is there anything more comforting? As you prepare your taste buds for a comfort food extravaganza, it is important to remember that human food should only be consumed by humans. Some popular holiday foods to keep out of the reach of your furry friend include:
Ham and fatty cuts
It may seem strange that dogs (which many believe to be carnivores) can have a bad reaction to eating meat, but the culprit here is an overdose of fat, which can cause pancreatitis. Pancreatitis is actually one of the most common illnesses that flood veterinary clinics at Christmas.
Why is this happening? Leftover ham, hot dogs, or fatty trimmings from a Christmas turkey contain much more fat than your dog’s body is used to ingesting in one sitting. In an effort to digest all of this fat, the pancreas can rapidly accelerate and become painful, inflamed, and swollen in a condition called pancreatitis. Pancreatitis can cause vomiting, nausea, dehydration, and worsening of the disease. It can even leave your dog with a lifelong sensitivity to fat, and you’ll have to feed him a special therapeutic diet for the rest of his life. Better to resist the urge to ‘treat’ your dog and save the leftover meat for his own lunch if possible!
Whether they are part of a fruit cake, inside a delicious boutique piece of chocolate, or simply as a tasty delicacy, macadamia nuts they are very poisonous to dogs. While the exact cause of toxicosis is unknown, signs of macadamia nut poisoning include inability to walk or stand, unsteady gait, tremors, hyperthermia, and vomiting. Even unopened macadamias can also pose a choking hazard. Make sure to keep these crunchy morsels out of reach!
Grapes, and raisins
Often times, grapes and their dehydrated versions, often found in a fruit cake, fruit plate, or as part of a spiced meat sauce, can cause kidney failure in dogs and cats. The exact mechanism for this is unknown, making it impossible to calculate a universal toxic dose. Better to keep them out of reach!
Like young children, cats and dogs are much more sensitive to alcohol than adult humans and can be poisoned very quickly. Alcohol is rapidly absorbed by the canine and feline body, and symptoms can include ataxia (wobbly walking), vomiting, decreased body temperature, loss of consciousness, or shortness of breath.
Onions and garlic
If you are roasting some onion or garlic along with their respective Christmas turkey, it is best to keep them away from your pets, as they contain a toxin that can damage your dog’s red blood cells. If enough red blood cells are destroyed, your dog could become anemic, lethargic, and weak.
Most pet owners these days are quite aware of the dangers of chocolate on pets. Chocolate contains theobromine and caffeine, which are toxic to cats and dogs, as they cannot metabolize these compounds as well as humans. Dark chocolate presents a higher risk than milk chocolate. Signs of chocolate toxicity can include vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, tremors, and coma.
The risk of chocolate toxicity depends directly on your pet’s weight, how much he ate, and how dark it was. If your pet has ingested chocolate, it is better that you go to your veterinarian to know the seriousness of the situation.
Not sure what gift to give your pet to keep her away from your Christmas lunch? Here are some of our favorite gifts:
What better way to give your pet a gift under the Christmas tree that he will really appreciate! Un dos treats has a wide variety of products that your dog will love, as well as gourmet cookies that are made especially for our furry friends.
Or maybe you would like to spoil your dog with a gift pack of toys?
We have all the toys and accessories to keep your dog happy, from basic toys to accessories that can make your life easier, such as smart drinkers or dispensers. (And why not this is also perfect to give to your friends as a surprise gift for their pets!
A low-fat treat for your pet with a big or sensitive belly
Just because your pet has a sensitive or fussy stomach doesn’t mean he should miss out on all the fun! Hills and Emerald Pet treats are perfect for this, and are even suitable for dogs and cats with these conditions (but check with your vet first!).
A treat to keep them busy– Beast Friends Treats are the perfect choice to keep your dog happy and busy on Christmas Day (and especially during Christmas lunch!) too. Keeping your pet off the table is perhaps the safest option if you don’t trust your family members not to sneak some food under the table.