WITH the abundance of rich, sweet and tasty festive food flowing from the kitchen during the holiday season, Petbarn is reminding Bundaberg residents to resist the temptation of slipping the family pet Christmas food scraps as it could prove to detrimental to their health and wellbeing.
Local Petbarn Bundaberg store manager Tammy Vaughan said: "Foods that we enjoy around the Christmas table could cause an upset stomach or could potentially be poisonous to your pet.
"Most of it is common sense - cheese and chocolate are loved by dogs but not very good for them. Other foods such as avocados, tomatoes, cherries, raisins, onions and garlic are also hazardous and could seriously harm your pet's wellbeing.
"It's important that pets are given a balanced diet specific to their breed, size and life stage all year round. If you are introducing any new food to your pet's diet it's important to watch for reactions or stomach upsets," said Tammy.
Dr Rachel Chay, Chief Veterinarian at Greencross Vets echoes Petbarn Bundaberg's warning and explains that animals have very different digestive systems and metabolism rates compared to humans and feeding scraps to your furry friend can prove toxic.
"Take caution when choosing what treats to give your pet this Christmas, as leftovers including cooked bones, sausages, crackling and ham offcuts have the potential to cause problems such as obstruction and pancreatitis, which in turn could become a serious issue and require immediate medical attention," said Dr Chay.
Petbarn Bundaberg offers a wide range of delicious natural treats under the Butcher's Superior Cuts range that pets can enjoy without the potential risk of an upset tummy or a visit to the vet.
Dr Chay says that this time of year is prolific for seeing pets with upset tummies due to table scraps.
"We know that pet owners just want to share the good times with their family pet but unfortunately this often leads to upset stomachs including vomiting and diarrhoea over the holiday period as well as unnecessary weight gain, which can go unnoticed but really take its toll on the health of your pet.
"Be wise with treats and remember a ball or rubber toy can be just as much fun for your pet as a bit of your Christmas lunch. If your pet is experiencing any sort of discomfort, be sure to get it checked by a veterinarian without delay," concluded Dr Chay.