The 12 Dangers of Christmas for Cats (sung by Dr. Karyn & Clutch)

Whether you’re a die-hard holiday fan, or a festive Die Hard fan like me (which absolutely counts as a Christmas movie, by the way), our cats can get up to all sorts of mischief this Christmas time. year. Even if you – or they – don’t observe this particular holiday, there are plenty of ways for them to find themselves on the wrong end of a piece of garland or lapping up a puddle of spilled eggnog.
Any of the hazards below could land you at the emergency vet this holiday season, so before you let the good times pass, take a look around your home and be sure to keep these items out of reach of your curious cat.
So in the spirit of corny Christmas carols, I offer you: The 12 dangers of Christmas.

🎵 On the 12th day of Christmas, my feline tried to eat… 🎶

12. Tasty chocolates

As we probably all know, chocolate is actually toxic to pets, including our cats. Filled with theobromine and caffeine, this delicious candy can cause dangerous elevations in heart rate, low blood pressure, vomiting, diarrhea and seizures. The darker the chocolate, the worse the effects.

11. Mince pies

Depending on the recipe used, fruit tartlets are made with a number of ingredients, with raisins and currants topping the list. Grapes, in all their formsare highly toxic to cats (and dogs) and can lead to kidney failure.

10. Christmas Lily

There are two types of lilies that can be present during the holiday season: true lilies, which are extremely toxic to cats, and the Christmas lily, which is technically not a lily. Amaryllis is a lily-like flower that is a popular decorative plant that can cause a life-threatening drop in blood pressure if cats eat the flower, leaves or stem, with the bulb of this plant being the most toxic part .

Every part of the traditional lily is highly toxic to catsMost poisonings result from cats licking pollen off their fur.

9. Fairy lights

homemade-gray-tabby-cat-in-a-checkered-tie-with-a-christmas-tree
Image credit: nadtochiy, Shutterstock

Take an attractive yarn and make it bright and shiny; you have a tempting toy for many playful felines. Electric shock is a possibility if your curious cat decides to chew on the wire, but ingestion of the plastic and wires is probably the biggest worry.

8. Holly Berries

These pretty red berries may look tasty, but they are actually toxic to cats, dogs and humans. Fortunately, the effects are generally not life-threatening, but if your cat eats it, he or she may suffer serious gastrointestinal upset, including vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration, and pain.

7. Stuffing Portions

Most stuffings contain garlic and onions, both of which are toxic to cats. They cause severe anemia by damaging red blood cells, which may take several days to appear.

6. Eggnog Cups

While this delicious holiday drink isn’t as dangerous as some of the other items on our list, with ingredients like condensed milk, sugar, cream, nutmegcinnamon and brandy is not something that should end up in a cat’s saucer.

5. Types of meat

Obviously, cats eat meat, and meat is good for cats. However, the meat we enjoy during the holiday season is generally not prepared with the feline gastrointestinal system in mind. High levels of fat, oil, and grease are a recipe for major digestive disaster, and sauce, stuffing, and seasonings can be even more dangerous. Plain cooked meats are safe for your cat, but keep basted turkey and raw ham off his plate.

4. Poinsettia Leaves

poinsettia in vase on table
Image credit: Ray_Shrewsberry, Pixabay

This beautiful plant with its bright red and green foliage is a holiday favorite and a great gift for the one who has everything! Milky sap is the main problem, but the good news is that serious toxicities are quite rare. The most common complaints are skin irritation, drooling, and mouth soreness, but some cats can experience vomiting and diarrhea if they overdo it.

3. Christmas Puddings

Just like our fruit tartlets, raisins and currants abound in Christmas cakes and puddings, so make sure you keep them out of reach.

2. Mistletoe

This unassuming little plant might make you smile and kiss you on the lips, but you’d better make sure you keep it up high where it belongs. Cats who munch on mistletoe can experience vomiting, diarrhea, difficulty breathing, or even death, so if you hang it from the ceiling, make sure it’s in a place your curious cat can’t reach .

1. Balls and strands of garlands

Cats don’t often end up at the vet for eating foreign objects, but the big exceptions are things like string, wool, cotton thread, or fishing line. And the garlands are just fancy string! They chase it, play with it and, from time to time, chew and swallow it. These linear foreign bodies can get stuck in the intestines, causing them to clump together and become blocked, which is very dangerous.
Cats and glass balls don’t mix. Known for playing with hanging ornaments, they can knock these fragile decorations off the tree, leaving shards of glass that can cut their legs. If they can pull them down without breaking them, the ball could break in their mouth if they play and chew.

Now, I don’t want you to start worrying that death and disaster are lurking around every corner this holiday season, but it’s always good to be aware of the problems that could arise if your friend feline decides to climb on your Christmas tree, to use it. holiday lunch or nibble on your festive floral arrangements. There are plenty of ways to make things a little safer for our cats this Christmas, but just in case, be sure to check your veterinary practice’s holiday arrangements and keep the number of one Pet Poison Helpline next to.

From my family to yours, have a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Winter Solstice, or simply enjoy spending time with your loved ones this holiday season. May your days be hairy and bright.

Signature of Dr. Karyn


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