We all know how busy the Christmas season with many stresses and overeating. Christmas can also create the same concerns for our feline friends.
Stress is one of the many reasons for a visit to the vets over the Christmas season. This is particularly common for cats who already show signs of anxiety. Planning ahead for Christmas can be vital in helping to keep your cat stress-free while also saving yourself from worrying.
One way which anxious cats can be helped in by providing a quiet retreat for them to escape to during the busiest christmas times, especially if you have visitors over. Putting your cat’s food in a quiet bedroom and making sure they have an escape route which doesn’t require moving through a crowded room is a good idea. Pheromone products such as Feliway can also be really beneficial to reduce stress levels.
Christmas can also introduce a number of potential hazards into the house. Many hazard occur when a cat eats something they are not suppose. Ingesting common festive plants such as poinsettia may cause vomitting, hypersalivation and depression, whie holly and mistletoe may cause gastrointestinal upset. Although Christmas trees are considered to be of low toxicity, ingestion may cause mild gastrointestinal upset and sharp needs can cause physical injury.
Decorations can also pose health risks and positioning should be considered carefully. Tinsel, although not poisonous to cats can cause intestinal injuries if ingested. Glass decorations can also pose a physical hazard with many decorations causing oesophageal or intestinal obstructions depending on the size or quantity of material eaten.
Chocolate is also quite dangerous if eaten by cats. Ingestion can result in vomiting, diarrhoea, thirst, lethargy and depression. In severe cases chocolate can result in convulsions.
Sage and onion stuffing although it may appear harmless can also cause a number of health concerns. Onion if ingested by cats can cause aneamia which can lead to depression, lethargy, weakness and pale mucous membranes.
Similarly dried fruits are highly toxic to cats which if ingested in large quantities can lead to acute renal failure.
If you suspect that your cat has eaten something they should have it is vital to contact your vet as soon as possible. For many cases early treatment can help to prevent many symptoms and further conditions developing.