Pet safety tips around the holidays

The holidays are full of commotion, and that can be rough for pets.
December 28, 2013 5:37:34 AM PST
The holidays are full of commotion, and that can be rough for pets. Whether you just got a pet for Christmas or you've had one for a while, you want to make sure it's safe when the fireworks go off on New Year's Eve.

Will Naples, General Manager of Norridge, IL Petco, came into our ABC 7 Eyewitness News studio with a few pooches to share tips.

Will's Tips:

1. Loud noises (fireworks) on NYE
A new pet may be anxious in the house and during New Year's fireworks celebrations, so help calm nerves with products like a ThunderShirt.
This unique dog anxiety wrap is designed to provide gentle, constant pressure to your dog's body, producing a calming effect.
The ThunderShirt is a wearable solution that can be used to help your pet with dog separation anxiety, travel stress, fear or thunder and other loud noises, and other canine anxieties.

2. Food safety
We don't recommend feeding your dog any human food, especially around this time of year when there's a lot of turkey and other foods with bones.
Dogs can swallow the bones and give them an upset stomach or much worse.
Instead, give them healthy treats or bones that will keep them busy while guests are eating.

3. If you have guests over, should you lock the pet away?
- If your pet is well socialized, it's a great idea to keep them around guests.
Well-behaved pets can help create a more fun atmosphere for everyone!
- If you have a new pet that is anxious around new people (this can be more common in dogs that come from a shelter and may not have had much human interaction), try placing them in a quiet space in the house with a comfy blanket. Make sure to check on them every 30 minutes and reward them with a treat. Do this until new pets are comfortable about large groups of people.

4. What should you tell your guests on treating your pet, especially if there are kids?
- If your new dog hasn't been around children before, help make the introduction with a treat and make sure the child approaches the dog in a calm and quiet manner.
- If your new dog needs some help in the "manners" department, check out Petco's FREE Puppy Socialization Seminar. This 30-minute constructive playtime on January 25 & 26, 2014 is designed to teach valuable social skills to puppies.

5. What if your pet accidentally gets alcohol or unsafe food into its system - should you head to the ER immediately?
- We recommend contacting your vet immediately if alcohol or dangerous food is ingested.


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