All About Marie

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Animal Files columnist of the Orange County Register; Emmy Award winning producer of Educational Television Programming; Host of "The Pet Place Radio Show" heard world-wide at www.blogtalkradio.com/petplace; click the player below to listen. Producer/Director/Editor of "The Pet Place TV Show" during the 18 years it ran on KDOC TV in Los Angeles and Orange Counties; Wife, Mother of five kids, Grandmother of one baby boy, and pet parent of three cats, two dogs, and a cockatoo.

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Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Happy Holidays!


On Sunday, December 6th, from 10 AM - 3 PM, The Irvine Animal Care Center is hosting its annual Home for the Holidays adoption event. It's a wonderful opportunity to bring home a new best friend who deserves a shot at a forever home. And while we are on the subject of holidays, this is a good time to talk about holiday do's and don'ts.
First, remember that your pets' diets should remain constant no matter what time of year it is. Simply put - do not give your pets any table scraps from holiday meals. Our celebratory food is just too rich for their digestive systems and can cause serious health problems. Further, turkey bones are an absolute no-no as they will splinter when chewed. If swallowed, turkey bone splinters are potentially lethal.
Second, secure your pets if you are planning to entertain guests. Constantly opening and closing doors are prime opportunities for pets to escape unnoticed and become lost or injured. If your pets tend to be door dashers or opportunists in this type of situation, you should consider keeping them in a bedroom until all the guests have arrived, and then put them back when guests begin to head home.
Third, some pets become fearful when extended family members and friends come to visit. This can lead to a bite situation. If your pets become anxious or seem overly timid around guests, it is best to keep them off-limits to all company and in a room as far away from the action as possible.
Finally, it seems almost inevitable that pets are given as gifts on an actual holiday, and though I can understand the logic for this, it is best to bring a new pet home before the big day, or wait until after the holiday is over. This will allow for a calm and stable environment in which to introduce a new companion animal. It is also vital to ensure that the recipients want a pet, and, more important, are capable of providing the time and care required. All too often, pets given as holiday gifts end up being relinquished to animal shelters within a few weeks or months.
Don't be a part of this tragedy. Remember, animals are sentient beings and not toys.
The holiday season is a wonderful time. Let's remember to make it as enjoyable for our pets as it is for us.