Vet’s opinion

The festive season is in full swing and can be dangerous for our pets. Enticing decorations, rich foods and excited house guests can all add up to a Christmas nightmare.

I’ve seen many emergencies at this time of year, but with vigilance you can avoid many hazards.

Make your decorations pet-proof. Don’t leave pets unattended near your Christmas tree. Injuries from toppling trees are common, as are ingested decorations. Cats are particularly fond of playing with tinsel and this can be dangerous if swallowed.

Not all visitors are pet-savvy. Warn guests, especially children, that they must not succumb to those puppy dog eyes from begging pets. Not so easy after a few sherries, but I’ve dealt with many emergencies after pets have been given dangerous foods by house guests.

It is not all bah humbug. Pets deserve a Christmas dinner too, but make sure the portion size is appropriate and stick to lean meat and vegetables. Avoid potatoes, yorkshire puddings or excessive gravy because we all know how hard it is to shift extra weight in the new year.

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