And what to avoid, or at least go careful with…
Chocolate: One of the ingredients of chocolate, theobromine can cause a rapid irregular heart rate and seizures in high doses. In rare cases, this can be fatal. Best keep those expensive truffles out of reach!
Grapes, raisins and currants: Lots of Christmas treats are full of raisins – dried grapes. These can make dogs seriously ill with acute kidney failure. We don’t really know why grapes and raisins are toxic, sometimes even in very small amounts, so keep all forms safely stored away.
Onions and garlic can cause destruction of red blood cells (anaemia), though generally only in very large quantities.
Bones and scraps: leftover Christmas dinner might seem like a lovely treat for your pet, but be careful. Cooked poultry bones easily splinter into sharp fragments, and fatty leftovers can trigger acute pancreatitis. A little lean turkey meat should be fine, but hold the skin and gravy!
Tinsel, baubles and lights: Shiny tinsel can be irresistible to cats and kittens, but if ingested can cause severe intestinal damage. Dogs have been known to ingest glass baubles (we don’t know why either!), and chewing on electrical cords can cause electrocution.
No matter how careful you are, accidents can happen. If your pet is unwell or injured at home, or eats something they shouldn’t call your vets as soon as possible for advice or treatment. Never try to treat your pet with human medication at home, as these can be dangerous for animals.