Keeping pets safe during the holidays

Posted at 10:54 PM, Nov 20, 2012
and last updated 2012-11-21 01:50:00-05

Many of the things we enjoy during the holiday season can be dangerous, even deadly, for our pets.

One of the biggest culprits is turkey. Both dogs and cats are sensitive to the meat, which can cause serious gastrointestinal problems and even pancreatitis, an inflammation of the pancreas.

Other foods that are toxic for pets include grapes, raisins, onions, chocolate and artificial sweeteners such as Xylitol. Poinsettias and mistletoe can also be fatal if ingested.

Pet owners are reminded to seek veterinary care if they suspect their pets have ingested something that might be toxic for them.

"They need to get to a veterinarian as soon as they can," said Sasha Reaid, University Veterinary Hospital. "Usually the veterinarian makes them vomit or gives them some special medications that can kind of help them get over it.

Early detection and care can help prevent long-term health problems.