Keep this year’s holiday season full of happiness by keeping everyone in your house safe—including your furry friends! Here, a Fayetteville, NC vet provides helpful safety tips for the holidays.

Tree Safety

If you’re setting up a tree this year, make sure it’s sturdily anchored in the base. You don’t want it tipping over if your pet bumps into it. In addition, the stagnant water in the base could contain harmful bacteria. Sweep up any loose pine needles under the tree, as they could puncture a pet’s intestines if accidentally swallowed.

Watch Out for Tinsel

Tinsel may look pretty, but it can wrap around the intestines of dogs and cats, causing an obstruction, if swallowed. What’s worse, the sparkly and dangling nature of tinsel makes it look like a toy to many pets, especially cats, so they’re likely to go after it. Either put tinsel high up on the tree so your pet can’t reach it, or leave it off entirely.

Keep Treats to Yourself

The holidays abound with chocolate morsels, candy, baked goods, and more treats that are bad for pets. Chocolate is poisonous, even in small amounts, and candy and gum that’s been sweetened with xylitol is highly toxic to pets as well. Fatty table scraps, cooked or uncooked meat bones, grapes, raisins, onions, garlic, avocado, and many more human foods are also dangerous for pets. Call your Fayetteville, NC veterinarian for a complete list of foods to avoid this season.

Poisonous Plants

Were you aware that poinsettia plants, mistletoe, and holly plants are all toxic to animals if enough is ingested? Keep these holiday plants safely away from your pet, and don’t let them nibble on the leaves or stems. Contact your veterinary professional immediately if your pet does swallow part of a poisonous plant.

Cocktail Safety

Keep an eye on you and your party guests’ holiday cocktails—even small amounts of liquor, wine, champagne, and beer can be toxic to pets, resulting in vomiting, diarrhea, spasms, and even coma if left untreated.

You may consider putting your pet in a back room if the party is coming to your house. This way, he’ll be safe and secure and won’t get overwhelmed by the people in the house.