Your dog’s safety means more than providing food, water, and shelter. There are many hazardous elements that can be dangerous and even deadly for your dog. Your dog’s safety should be just as important as the rest of your family’s.
Here are a few of the lesser-known hazards your dog may come in contact with indoors and out. Aluminum foil, plastic wrap, anti-freeze, corn cobs, bones, chocolate, ice-melting chemicals, and plants are all very dangerous if your dog ingests them. They can cause severe problems in their digestive tract like blockages, tears, and vomiting.
You should never give your dog steak, veal, pork, turkey, chicken or rib bones. They can splinter and cause severe damage which must be treated by a veterinarian.
Electrocution is also a big safety hazard. Dog’s like to chew on a lot of different materials. But if they chew on an electric cord or wire, they could receive an electric shock which could kill them. Make sure all cords are hidden or out of their reach.
Fireworks is another huge safety issue. The loud noise and reverberation can cause tremendous fear and possibly long-term phobias. Protect your dog by keeping her indoors to mute the sounds. If the fireworks are nearby, play a radio or TV loudly or provide white noise from an air conditioner, fan, or noise machine.
Heatstroke and heat exhaustion occurs when your dog’s body temperature rises to a dangerous level. NEVER leave your dog in a locked car even with the windows cracked if the outdoor temperature is going to be high. Heatstroke can cause brain damage and death.
Hypothermia is another weather-related danger. If you must leave your dog outdoors in cold weather, make sure that she has an appropriate shelter where she is shielded from the elements. If your dog is small or short-haired, she should wear a sweater when going outside for a walk or for an extended period of time. If your dog is shaking, she is too cold.
Never leave a training collar on your dog, especially if she is going to be created or caged. She can catch it on a part of the cage and choke. Never leave your dog tied to any object outside unattended. She can be harassed, poisoned or stolen.
The list of poisonous plants is too extensive to list here. Some of the more well known and common plants are avocado leaves, Azalea, Calla Lily, Christmas Cactus and tree needles, Daffodil, Lily of the Valley, Mistletoe berries, Snapdragon, and all fruit seeds and pits.
Do you like to dress up your dog for the holidays? Well, unless she really enjoys it, it may not be a good idea. It can cause undue stress. If you do decide to put a costume on her, make sure it is safe, does not impede her walking, eyesight or hearing. Make sure there are no dangling parts she can chew on or choke on.
If she seems distressed, take her picture for posterity and let her go “au natural” for the rest of the holiday events.