The holidays are here, and it’s time for houses full of relatives and friends, gathering to celebrate the holidays. While your mind may be mostly on how you might not have enough room for everyone, or how all the food will get made, it’s important to keep your pet in mind. Disruptions to their schedule can be hard on them, so it’s important to make sure they stay as calm and comfortable as possible.
Food is the number one thing to be conscious of. Keep holiday food away from your pets. Table scraps at this time of year can be particularly harmful. Holiday foods tend to have higher fat content or more sugar. Feeding your pets this food can cause more digestive problems than normal.
Be mindful of decorations around the holiday season. If you’re going to have dozens of candles lit, or you’re lighting a menorah, make sure that it’s in a place where your pets can’t get to it. If your cat is constantly getting up onto tables, you could be facing a fire hazard if it’s something they’re likely to knock off. If you have candles lit on a low coffee table, and your dog has a propensity for knocking things off with their tail, you might want to consider flameless, battery operated candles, or finding a better place to keep the lit candles.
If you’re putting up any other decorations or a Christmas tree, you need to consider what your pets are most likely to do. If you have a dog with a wild tail, you might want to consider putting less breakable ornaments closer to the bottom of the tree. If you have cats, it’s important to consider what their reaction is going to be. Cats are famous for climbing trees and toppling them out of curiosity. Make sure your tree is in a stand as sturdy as possible. Be sure to keep your pets away from the water at the bottom of the tree, as there’s a chance there could be bacteria.
If you have strands of lights hung around your house, be aware of where the wires are. Humans and pets alike could trip these up and cause a holiday decorating disaster. Holiday plants can also be cause to worry. Keep mistletoe, poinsettia and holly away from pets, as they’re toxic.
If you’re going to have a house full this holiday season, it’s important to keep an eye out on your pets. Be sure that they have their collar on, if you’re going to have guests coming and going and doors opening and closing. Make sure your pet has a quiet place to go rest. Perhaps move their bed into your quiet bedroom, rather than the loud living room. Remember to keep their meals on schedule, as this could add stress too.