Photo credit: Erik Drost vis Flickr (Creative Commons)
Christmas can be a fun time for your pets. They get more attention than any other time of the year. They might get to meet new animal friends. If they’re lucky, they even get presents. However, pet safety is extremely important during the Christmas season. Today, we’re going to share 5 easy ways to make Christmas safer for your pets.

1. Be Careful with the Christmas Tree
Whether it’s fake or real, Christmas trees can be dangerous for pets. Cats might jump on the tree, pulling it down onto themselves. Or, both cats and dogs might eat the needles – whether they’re real or fake.

2. Avoid Using Tinsel
Many pet owners already know how dangerous tinsel can be for pets. The shiny, floating objects can attract cats and dogs who want to play with it. 

When your pets eat tinsel, it can get caught in their digestive tracts, leading to serious problems. 
Keep tinsel out of reach for your pets – like higher up around the Christmas tree instead of on the lower branches. Or, avoid using tinsel altogether if you want to be extra careful.

3. Be Careful with Flammable, Hazardous Objects
You might not be aware how many dangerous objects are lying around your house until it’s too late. During Christmas season, you might have lit candles everywhere, or you may leave scissors lying on the floor after opening gifts. People and pets can trip over wires and other objects on the ground, causing injuries to everyone involved.

Make sure things like wrapping paper, tape, scissors, and candles are well out of reach for your pets. Avoid putting candles where a dog’s wagging tail might knock it off onto the ground, for example, or where your cat might jump up and knock it over.

4. Avoid Harmful Christmas Foods
You and your guests might be tempted to feed dogs Christmas treats under the table. You probably know of some of the obvious foods to avoid, like chocolate, but there are other harmful foods as well. Avoid feeding pets the following Christmastime snacks and treats:

  • Chocolate
  • Turkey (bones can become lodged in a pet’s throat or digestive tract)
  • Holiday plants, like mistletoe, poinsettias, holly, and lilies can all be harmful to your pet
  • Anything in excess (every little bit of food can add up, causing your pet to gain weight or develop digestive problems from high fat foods)

5. Give Pets a Safe Place on New Year’s Eve
Every year, in cities across Australia, cats and dogs run away, never to be seen again. The loud noises – like fireworks – can be terrifying for pets.