Sometimes, you just turn your back for a minute and chaos ensues. A curious dog or cat can get into some serious mischief when there is great food in the house and their pet parents are distracted on a holiday. Many veterinarians see cases ranging from the simple to the highly serious during and after holidays. Most pets can experience a range of symptoms from food overload such as: vomiting and diarrhea, pancreatitis and bone obstruction if they swiped or were fed a cooked bone.
Nux Vomica is a homeopathic remedy available in most health food stores. It works well for food overload. If you find Fido with his face buried in a pecan pie, he can have 1-2 pellets every eight hours. Three treatments will probably be required. Try to encourage your pet to eat some greens like celery or parsley to digest sweets and a little garlic or ginger if the pet got into meats or starches. These holistic remedies aid digestion. Never try to induce vomiting because it can create esophageal obstruction or rupture your pet’s stomach. If your dog or cat vomits more than three times, a trip to the animal emergency room in your area will be needed.
A little holiday food offering isn’t always bad. A bit of white meat turkey without skin is easily digested and sweet potatoes or vegetables are good treats, too. Watch the starches like bread, white potatoes and desserts. They don’t digest well and can cause dampness in the gastrointestinal tract resulting in irritation, vomiting and even skin breakouts. Just like many dieting humans, banish the breadbasket from your pet’s reach when it comes to these kinds of carbs.
You may want to consider boarding your dog or cat if it is upset by large groups. Gating off an area may give a dog a relaxing place to be alone without missing out on the festivities entirely. If you plan to put your pet outside, be sure your pet is used to cold weather before leaving it behind. So many of our pets live inside most of the time, it isn’t fair to leave them in the cold when they aren’t used to it.
Be sure to seek medical attention quickly if your pet becomes ill as a result of eating too much. Waiting too long can make your pet suffer needlessly and can make the problem more difficult and expensive to treat. Have a safe and happy holiday. –Dr. Carlson