MAKE THIS CHRISTMAS A HAPPY CHRISTMAS FOR YOUR PETS
RSPCA WA is reminding pet owners to think about their animals this Christmas, and to consider the impact of the festivities on their beloved pets, while celebrating with loved ones.
“For many households, Christmas Day is busier than most days. With friends and family gathering for lunches and the like, which means more noise and activity; this can be quite a significant change for an animal. It’s important to give your pet ample opportunity to have a break from the festivities, in a part of the house that is cool, calm and where they can feel safe,” said Maree Daniels, Executive Manager Community Engagement, RSPCA WA.
“Christmas is obviously a particularly exciting time for children with new games and potentially toys with loud sound effects which can be overwhelming for a pet. It’s a good idea to put pets away during the height of activity when children are playing with new toys. This is particularly important where dogs are concerned, and children should never be left unsupervised near a dog when either is playing with a toy,” Ms Daniels added.
“Understandably children can become overly excited and hyperactive on such a big day and some animals may not cope well with this or may not be used to having children around so it’s sensible to keep a check on these situations.
“We simply ask this Christmas, for pet owners to be sensitive to their pet’s body language and watch for signs of stress or anxiety, which may be something as simple as retreating, looking away or licking their lips. Like us, pets get tired too and the best thing you can do for them is find them a quiet space away from the noise,” Ms Daniels finished.
Pet owners are also advised not to share Christmas dinner leftovers with their pets, or to give them food from the BBQ on Christmas Day.
“We all love to treat our pets too however, at Christmastime, people consume numerous foods that are really toxic to pets, such as chocolate and mince pies. Fat from meat, whether cooked or uncooked, can cause health issues for dogs too; and cooked bones should never be given to pets due to the risk of splintering.
“We recommend purchasing some pet specific treats so you have them on hand ready to treat your pet at Christmas without putting their health at risk and yourself the risk of incurring an unexpected trip to the vet,” said Ms Daniels.