News Releases, College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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News from the
College of Veterinary Medicine
University of Illinois
3225 Vet. Med. Basic Sciences Bldg.
2001 S. Lincoln Ave.
Urbana, IL 61802
December 12, 2011

Release on
Contact: Chris Beuoy

Pet Safety is a Key Ingredient for a Happy Holiday Season

Winter brings lots of holiday fun, but it also comes with its share of potential dangers for our animal friends. With the help of Dr. Kandi Norrell, primary care veterinarian at the University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital, we've put together a "naughty vs. nice" list to help you keep your pets safe this winter.

NAUGHTY (Keep these out of your pet's reach): Alcohol, antifreeze, breakable ornaments, chocolate, Christmas roses, Christmas tree preservative solution, fatty meats and sauces, garlic, grapes, holly, ivy, lilies, mistletoe, onions, poinsettia, raisins, tinsel, xylitol (artificial sweetener).

NICE: Clean paws! Be sure to wipe their paws after walks to remove all ice melt or safety salt. The great indoors. Pets who spend significant time outdoors need heated housing and water sources. They also need extra food since keeping warm burns calories. A moderately-sized portion of lean meat makes a safe treat during the holidays.


Visit our Pet Columns for tips on winter safety and avoiding hazardous substances. But food or other ingestible substances aren't the only potential dangers during holiday gatherings. In the spirit of the holidays, family and friends usually do their best to create family harmony, but sometimes our pets don't get the message. Find out how to keep the fur from flying with Tell Fido to 'Play Nice' This Holiday Season.


Can't get your furry friend to keep those reindeer antlers on long enough to snap a photo for your holiday card? Picture Your Pet can help. With this user-friendly web app from the University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital, you can create a free holiday e-card featuring your pet's photo. Just upload, add your choice of accessories and you're ready to download, e-mail, or Tweet.

Get started at And don't forget to share your finished photo on our Facebook page.

The University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital provides care for medical emergencies 24/7 including all holidays.