Pet Safety Tips

There are many ways that your pet may get injured or sick. Here are some saftey tips to help your family prevent an accident.

Emergency Tips

If you are like millions of animal owners nationwide, your pet is an important member of your household. The likelihood that you and your animals will survive an emergency such as a fire, flood, tornado or terrorist attack depends largely on emergency planning done today. Some of the things you can do to prepare for the unexpected, such as assembling an animal emergency supply kit and developing a pet care buddy system, are the same for any emergency.

How To Prepare Your Pet For Emergencies
More Information From Ready.Gov

Holiday Tips

  • Don't feed your pet table scraps. Too much of anything is bad for your pet. Feeding your pet table scraps is a bad habit. Some foods such as chocolate are toxic to pets.

  • Feeding your dog bones is a no-no. The bones may splinter and cause it to get caught in his throat.

  • If you insist on feeding your pet human food, do not feed him from the table - you will be asking for behavior problems. Feeding your dog from the table will cause him to constantly beg for food when you are eating at the table.

  • Some holiday plants are toxic to animals. Plants such as Pointsettias, Holly, ivy, mistletoe, pine, balsam, juniper, cedar, and hibiscus are toxic when eaten by pets. Keep these out of reach.

  • Keep ribbons and strings out of reach of pets and children. Eating ribbons or such materials may cause intestinal blockage. Your pet or child may also get tangled in such materials where they may choke.

  • Do not tie ribbons around your pets' neck. They may get caught on something and choke.

  • Put your pets in a quiet place if you are having many guests over your home. Increased traffic and noise may make your pet nervous. Avoid this and keep him in a quiet place or board him in a kennel.

  • Place precious ornaments and decorations out of reach of pets and children.

  • Do not use tinsel on your Christmas tree. Chewing and ingestion of such materials may cause intestinal blockage.

  • Cover electrical cords and prevent a deadly accident.

  • Supervise all candles around pets and children.

  • Always keep an I.D. tag on your pet. Increased traffic may cause your pet to accidentally get out of your home. Guarantee his safe return by always keeping a tag on your pet.

Winter Safety Tips

Boston Animal Control highly discourages people to keep outdoor pets. There are many dangers such as extreme weather, wild animals and people that like to play hoaxes. Outdoor animals are also lonely animals. Keep them indoors where they can feel like part of the family.

  • Keep your pets indoors. Too cold outside for you? Well then, chances are that it is also too cold for Max and Fluffy. Boston Animal Control highly discourages people to keep pets outdoors at all times. Dogs and cats are social animals and should be allowed to live in a home with people and other pets.

  • Insist on having an outdoor dog? Then you must provide proper housing. It is the law! Dog houses should be raised a few inches above the ground. It should be large enough for your dog to walk in and small enough to maintain his body temporature. Provide wheat hay for insulation. Face the door away from the direction of the wind and cover the doorway with a rug remnant. Make a slit in the rug so that he may walk in and out of the house. Plastic dog houses may not be warm enough for your dog.

  • Your dog doesn't use the dog house? Well, you have to provide it anyway. It is the law! Max will use the house if it is a good one. He should always have the option to use it.

  • Always provide fresh water for your pet. If Max is an outdoor dog you must make sure that he always has fresh (non-frozen) water made available to him.

  • Your outdoor dog needs extra food when it is cold. Max uses up more calories to keep warm. Make sure to feed him some extra calories so that he can keep warm.

  • Prevent frostbite and wipe Max and Fluffy's paws and coat after they have been out in the snow.

  • Wipe Max and Fluffy's paws after walking through the ice melting salt. Salt may burn the pads on their paws. Salt is also toxic.

  • Outdoor cats or wild animals may seek the comfort of warmth in your car engine. Prevent a terrible injury or death by knocking on the hood of your car or honking your horn.

  • Provide a warm place to sleep for your pet inside your home. The floor may be cold - keep a warm area for your pet to lay down.

  • Antifreeze is highly toxic! Clean up antifreeze spills. A mere lick from an animal may cause him his life. Check the stores for an animal friendly antifreeze. Always store bottles of antifreeze out of reach of animals and children.

Unsafe Toys for Your Pet

Know your pet. Some of these "unsafe" toys may be safe for your pet if he is not a chewer. Supervise play with each toy before determining if the toy is safe. Immediately contact a veterinarian if your pet should choke or swallow a foreign object.

  • Rope toys: Your dog may pull the strings out of the rope. Ingesting such materials may cause intestinal blockage. Always supervise play with such toys.

  • Dog toys made out of thin rubber: Your dog may chew the rubber and ingest the material.

  • Toys with glued-on decorations: If your dog, cat, rabbit or ferret are known chewers, then do not give them such toys. They may swallow these parts and choke.

  • Cat toys made with tinsel-like material: Your cat may chew this material. This may cause intestinal problems.

  • Toys stuffed with cotton: If your pet is a destructive chewer, then you should not give him such toys. Ingestion of such cottonball-like material may cause intestinal problems.

  • Feather toys: Supervise play with such materials. Your cat may chew on the feather and the shaft may get stuck in her throat.

  • String, yarn, floss, ribbon, twine, rubber bands, bells, etc. can be swallowed and may cause severe injury to your playful pet. Your pet may get tangled or may ingest the material.

  • Toys for birds: Look for sharp edges or points that could injure the bird. You should determine if there are any places where the bird might catch a toe nail or get tangled in the toy.

  • Make sure the toy is not small enough to cause your pet to choke if he tries to swallow it.

  • Don't assume that a toy is safe if it is sold in a pet store. Know your pet!

Cats and Milk

Feeding a cat cow's milk is a no-no. Cats are unable to digest this milk and frequent drinking of milk may cause parasites. There are special milk products specifically made for young kittens that are not being fed by their mother. Check out a pet store near you or feel free to call us at the shelter for some information.