Provided by Fetch! Pet Care
While you’re planning for the holidays, don’t forget to plan for your pets, too! The holidays offer unique challenges for pets and pet-owners. Here are eight tips to make sure both you and your pets enjoy the season:
- Watch out for holiday foods that could hurt your pet. Common foods including grapes and raisins, chocolate, onions, garlic, nuts, and the sweetener xylitol are all poisonous to pets. (See the ASPCA’s article “People Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Pet” for a more complete list.)
- Choose decorative plants carefully. Poinsettias, lilies, holly, and other decorative plants can make pets sick or even kill them. The ASPCA’s directory of common poisonous plants can tell you what to avoid. (Lilies are particularly dangerous for cats. You can read more about why not to bring lilies into your home if you have cats on the FDA’s website.)
- Choose decorations your pet can’t chew or swallow. Tinsel, ribbons, and glass ornaments can all cause serious health problems if swallowed. If a child could hurt themselves with it, so could a pet.
- Cover your cords. If your pet loves to chew, make sure they can’t get to cords or buy and use cord covers.
- Use artificial candles. They give decorating a traditional look without the fire risk if your pet tips one over.
- Give your pet a safe retreat. Holidays can be overwhelming for pets. They need somewhere away from the center of activity and out of reach of children and visiting pets where they can go to relax and feel secure.
- Make sure your pet has ID. There’s a lot of coming and going during the holidays. If your pet escapes, an ID tag and microchip can help them get back home.
- Plan ahead if you’re going to travel. If you’re going to be leaving your pet at home, make sure to get their vaccinations up to date and schedule a pet sitter for them before the holiday rush. If you’re going to take your pet with you, you’ll need to think about everything from finding carriers that fit airline requirements to booking hotels that accept pets. Don’t leave it to the last minute!
Finally, remember to enjoy your pet’s company! The holidays can be stressful for everyone. Together, you and your pet can support each other through the hubbub of the holiday season.