Holiday hazards to avoid for pets


The holidays can be hazardous to pets.

Owners know the biggies: don't feed dogs chocolate and keep them away from poinsettias.

But here are some other things that might land a dog or cat in the emergency room.

Veterinarians say spicy foods and milk-based foods can upset a dog's stomach.

But especially avoid feeding high-fat foods like ham and gravy. Also, grapes, raisins, artificially sweetened foods, meat bones, macadamia nuts, chives, onions, garlic and yeast bread dough can all be fatal to animals.

And keep them out of the alcohol and caffeinated beverages.

As for plants, no mistletoe, holly, lilies or Christmas roses. All are considered poisonous to animals.

Kansas State University veterinarian Susan Nelson said it's common to see pets with holiday injuries.

"Around the holidays, we do tend to see more animals coming in, especially dogs that have ingested things they shouldn't have, whether it be inappropriate foods or they're getting obstructed, sometimes they do eat their new dog bed that you gave them or they've gotten into the ornaments or somebody's purse, so we do see more poisonings and obstructions sometimes this time of year," Nelson said.

On a lighter note, owners looking for a clever gift idea for their pets might consider a pet fitbit. Those are available now.