Vet Tech Students Warn Pet Owners of Holiday Hazards

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…yes, it’s officially the holiday season. Time to gather with friends and family, but don’t forget your furry four legged little friends. Students in the veterinary technology program want pet owners to be aware of some hazards that come with this time of the year.

Globe University-Woodbury campus Student Chapter of National Veterinary Technicians in America (SCNAVTA) students helped develop a list of holiday hazards pet owners should know about during this festive season. SCNAVTA is a part of the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA).

“We all love our animals, and it’s important for us to know what hazards may be right in front of us during the holidays/winter season,” said Melanie Dittmann, SCNAVTA supervisor and vet tech instructor at Globe University-Woodbury. “We want to spread awareness about holiday hazards for our pets as our campus’s animal advocate student group.”

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Holiday Hazards for Pets:

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Chocolate
  • Coffee
  • Moldy or spoiled foods
  • Onions, onion powder
  • Fatty foods
  • Salt
  • Yeast dough
  • Lilies can be deadly to a cat.
  • Poinsettias, though generally overrated in toxicity, can be irritating to the mouth and stomach, and may cause mild vomiting or nausea if ingested.
  • Mistletoe can cause gastrointestinal upset.
  • Holly ingestion could cause vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, and lethargy.
  • Christmas tree water may contain fertilizers, which, if ingested, can cause stomach upset. Stagnant tree water can be breeding grounds for bacteria, which can also lead to vomiting, nausea, and diarrhea if ingested.
  • Ribbons or tinsel can get caught in the intestines and cause intestinal obstruction.
  • Glass ornaments can cut the tissues of the gastrointestinal tract if ingested.

Call your local veterinary clinic if your pet comes into contact with any of the holiday hazards above.

Want to know more about SCNAVTA and the vet tech program?

“There are a number of benefits to joining an SCNAVTA chapter,” said Dittmann. “Not only does it help improve the student’s understanding of the veterinary science, but it helps to develop leadership skills. It also allows you to make personal and professional connections with other veterinary professionals. Joining a SCNAVTA chapter can dramatically improve the student’s ability to develop professional.

Contact Melanie Dittmann for more information on how to join SCNAVTA and to learn more about the vet tech program at Globe University-Woodbury.