CRITTER CHATTER: Our pets of the month plus...
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Dec 26, 2012  |  Vote 0    0

CRITTER CHATTER: Our pets of the month plus holiday tips

North York Mirror

Wishing all our readers the very best for a warm and wonderful new year filled with joy, treasured memories and good tidings.

Both our pets this month hail from Toronto Animal Services North Region located at 1300 Sheppard Ave. W.

Niko is a two-year-old neutered male Siberian husky who is described as high energy and ready for adventure. He’s been adopted by two different families and brought back to the shelter both times. Shelter staff stress his need for adequate exercise, mental stimulation/training and an adopter with patience and experience.

He is a good-natured boy, house trained, crate trained and gets along well with other dogs. His ID number is A636821

Barney is a two-year-old neutered male domestic short-haired tabby cat who is a calm and collected customer. Affectionate and attention-loving, Barney is litter-boxed trained, quiet and enjoys soaking up the rays through a sunny window.

Barney gets along well with other cats but would be happy to be adopted as a single cat, or with a feline friend; he’s open to sharing as long as he finds a forever home. His ID number is A636377.

If you are interested in either Niko or Barney, contact Toronto Animal Service North at 416-338-8723 or visit their website at


I offer a few holiday safety tips (adapted from that bring awareness/reminders that may save you and your pet a trip to the emergency clinic this holiday season.

Don’t throw your dog a bone. Bones are brittle and sharp pieces can get lodged in your pet’s esophagus or intestine. Because poultry bones are hollow, they can break especially easily.

Keep chocolate out of reach. Chocolate contains theobromine and caffeine, which can be toxic to dogs. Make sure chocolate candies left out for guests are kept away from your dog.

Keep a lid on the garbage can. During the holiday season, there is a lot of activity in the kitchen and several new, tasty smells flowing from the garbage can. Ensure your garbage can is covered because goodies found in the trash can present a significant risk for gastritis for pets and can also be a choking hazard for dogs and cats.

Watch out for holiday plants. Popular plants including poinsettia, mistletoe and holly can cause vomiting and diarrhea. Play it safe and contact your veterinarian if you believe your pet has been nibbling on one of these plants.

Store wrapping supplies away from pets. Pets who ingest ribbon or tinsel can develop a foreign body obstruction. Foreign body surgery can be traumatic and expensive. Keep ribbon and other string and tinsel put away and pick up loose wrappings quickly.

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