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Southlake Animal Hospital
Give us a call today! 219-942-0909
Call us today! 219-942-0909

3570 E. Lincoln Hwy
Merrillville, IN 46410

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Have Your Pet Avoid These Holiday Pet Toxins

December 15 2015

The holidays have arrived! Will your pet be safe this time of year? Avoid a pet emergency by having your animal companion steer clear of the following pet poisons as discussed by your Crown Point, IN veterinarian.

Poisonous Plant Life

Several holiday plants aren’t safe for our animal friends. Poinsettias tend to get a bad rap; they aren’t exactly poisonous, but they do produce a milky sap that can irritate a pet’s mouth and stomach if chewed and swallowed. Mistletoe and holly, on the other hand, have been known to induce serious poisonous reactions when ingested by animals. To be safe, keep your pets away from all holiday plants.


Of course, most pet owners already know that chocolate is a big no-no for animals. All varieties—dark, semi-sweet, milk, white, powdered, etc.—contain theobromine and caffeine, chemicals that are harmful to pets. Don’t allow your animal friend to get anywhere near chocolate treats or foods containing chocolate.


Candies, gums, and certain types of baked goods are sweetened with an artificial sugar called xylitol. Xylitol is safe for human consumption, but it is quite toxic to our furry friends. This dangerous substance can cause vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, coma, and worse in a matter of minutes if too much is ingested! Always keep candy and gum far out of your pet’s reach.

Fatty Table Scraps

Your holiday dinner table contains plenty of scrumptious morsels that your pet would love to get their paws on. Don’t let anyone around your table slip your pet too many fatty scraps, though; at the very least, fat and foreign foods can upset a pet’s stomach. Most frightening of all, too much fat at once can induce acute pancreatitis, a life-threatening emergency that will require a trip to the vet’s office immediately.

Tree Stand Water

Don’t let your pet get underneath your tree at the base. For one, they may jostle the tree and topple it over, or ingest sharp pine needles that could puncture the intestines. In addition, your tree’s base contains stagnant water that serves as a breeding ground for bacterial agents and other contaminants. Drinking this water may lead to health problems in pets.

These aren’t the only holiday pet toxins to be aware of. If you would like more information on how to keep your animal companion safe during the holidays, contact your Crown Point, IN animal hospital today for help.