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Holiday Hazards

We hope you are able to stop by UCCC to see our Holiday Hazards Display. 
We hope that this may remind everyone of some of the dangerous things to watch for this (and every) holiday season, to make sure our pets are safe.


2021 Festival of Trees Public Hours
Admission: $5 adults; $3 kids 1-12 and seniors 60+

5-8 p.m., Friday, Nov. 26

1-5 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 27

1-6 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 28

3-8 p.m., Monday, Nov. 29

3-8 p.m., Wednesday, Dec. 1

3-8 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 2

3-8 p.m., Friday, Dec. 3

1-5 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 4


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The toxic effects of human medications in dogs can range from gastrointestinal upset (vomiting and/or diarrhea) to more serious problems like seizures or liver or kidney failure if not treated quickly once ingested by your dog.


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If the ribbon or thread is long or thick, it can lead to a life-threatening condition known as gastrointestinal obstruction due to linear foreign body. Linear foreign bodies develop in cats when they eat ribbon.

Candles (Fire)

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Synthetic fragrances and carcinogenic soot from paraffin candles, a petroleum product, can exacerbate respiratory conditions such as asthma in humans and pets. ... Ingestion of most candles will generally lead to nothing more than an upset stomach and diarrhea.

Unattended candles start many preventable fires that sadly lead to tragic fire deaths. Often, the fire is sparked by things that easily catch on fire.



Ingestion of alcohol can cause dangerous drops in blood sugar, blood pressure, and body temperature. Severely intoxicated animals can potentially experience seizures and respiratory failure.


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Sugar free gum and candy contain a sugar substitute called xylitol which is extremely toxic to dogs. Each piece of sugar free gum contains enough xylitol to make a small dog deathly ill. The poison acts quickly and can cause seizures and complete liver failure in a matter of hours.

Holly Berries

Christmas Holly

When Christmas or English holly is ingested, it can result in severe gastrointestinal upset (e.g., vomiting, diarrhea) thanks to the spiny leaves and the potentially toxic substances (including saponins, methylxanthines, and cyanogens).


String Lights

Keep strands of sparkling lights away from the bottom few branches of your Christmas tree, beyond the reach of your pet's curious sniffing. Not only can pets get tangled in string lights, but these strands can give them a potentially life-threatening electrical shock if a pet bites through the wire.


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Rawhide bones and other edible chews can pose a choking and blockage risk. In fact, this is a much bigger risk than contamination or digestive irritation. If your dog swallows large pieces of rawhide, the rawhide can get stuck in the esophagus or other parts of the digestive tract.


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Although tinsel is not poisonous, it is still very dangerous if your dog eats any. The tinsel acts as what is called a linear foreign body, which means that the tinsel can wrap itself around your dog's tongue or get stuck in the stomach so it cannot get through the intestines to be expelled through the bowels.

Kids Toys

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Toys that are too small pose chocking risks as well as the potential to cause an intestinal foreign body. Balls and stuffed animals that are small enough to be swallowed are incredibly dangerous. Cat toys are the most common offenders and are often small enough to be swallowed but too large to make it all the way through the intestines. Another common culprit are pieces of larger toys that have been torn apart and are then eaten. Swallowing these things can result in an intestinal blockage that requires emergency surgery to correct.


Chocolate Truffles

Chocolate is poisonous to dogs mostly because of its theobromine content, which dogs are unable to metabolize effectively. If your dog eats chocolate, you should monitor them closely and seek veterinary attention if they show any symptoms, or if they are very young, pregnant or have other health concerns.


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While a favorite and healthy snack for people, grapes, raisins and currants can cause kidney failure in dogs. Raisins can commonly be found in combination with other foods, potentially increasing the risk of exposure as compared with grapes and currants. The toxicity concern is the same.


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Turkey Skin: Fatty foods like turkey skin and gravy are difficult for dogs to digest. Your dog's pancreas can even become inflamed, resulting in pancreatitis, a very serious disease.

Cooked Bones: Although dogs love bones, cooked bones are a different story. The turkey bone can splinter in the dog's digestive tract resulting in a trip to the ER.


Holiday Ornament

Breakable ornaments – Glass bulbs are particularly appealing to pets who love to bat them around. Inevitably, one or more of your cherished ornaments will be broken, which could cause possible injury to your pet.

If You Suspect Your Dog Ate Glass, Do Not Attempt To Induce Vomiting! Call Your Vet Right Away!

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