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Curiosity Can Kill the Cat - Thanksgiving Dangers

By: Dr. Debra Primovic

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Cats are naturally curious. And with all the activities, aromas...some cats just can't control themselves. And unfortunately, their curiosity can cause life-threatening injuries.

Thanksgiving is only a few days away. There are common problems or emergencies that occur to cats that are associated with Thanksgiving. Knowing these, we will give you some tips to make your home safe for your cats may also make your guests more comfortable.

How can you make your home safe and "cat proof" to the common Thanksgiving dangers? Let's talk about them right now. These tips are based on emergencies and problems veterinarians see on our around Thanksgiving. Please take special care with the following:

  • Prevent access to counter tops – some cats will jump up on to counters. This is so tempting to cats with the succulent smells of turkey and food. Jumping on counters is especially dangerous during this holiday as often all the burners are on and there are additional hot things on the counters. The hot stove and hot items on counters can cause severe burns. Hot burners can also cause tail and hair to catch on fire.

  • Safely dispose of the turkey string – the string that wraps or ties turkeysturkey's legs is often haphazardly placed aside and found and eaten by cats. The same danger exists with the plastic turkey wrapper. Ingestion of these indigestible items can require life-saving surgery. Place in a secure covered trashcan.

  • Take care with the fireplace – many times Thanksgiving is the first of the winter holidays and the first time the fireplace has been used. Take special care that pets stay away from the fire. It is a good idea to have a carbon monoxide detector in your home to ensure all heaters are adequately ventilated.

  • Careful with table scraps and food– some cats deal well with table scraps and others get stick. Small breed dogs can be especially sensitive and develop a disease called pancreatitis. This is especially true with high fat meals. Don't feed your cat the skins to get rid of them. Bones can also be dangerous. Don't feed the bones. If you feed anything – offer small amounts of vegetables or meat.

  • Special care with candles – this is a wonderful occasion to light some beautiful candles. Only do this with the candles are supervised. Never leave the room with a burning candle. Pets can knock them over causing burns or house fires.

  • Beware liquid potpourri – this is another item that is commonly used during the holidays to give the home a wonderful aroma. The liquid \potpourri can be very caustic to the gums and throat of ingested. Spray or plug in air fresheners may be a safer alternative.

    In addition, prevent your cat's access to any new cut flowers. Most cut flowers can cause an upset stomach and vomiting. Wash all bedding and vacuum like crazy. Doing this will also help clean, minimize the hair and make your home smell better.


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