As the festive cheer of the Christmas holidays takes over, our schedules often become packed with shopping, family gatherings, and holiday parties.
While it’s a season to be jolly for us, the disruption in routine can be confusing and sometimes stressful for our pets. Maintaining a stable environment for them is crucial to ensure they enjoy the holidays just as much as we do.
Here’s some advice on how to care for your pets during the bustling Christmas season.
1. Stick to Routines
- Consistent Schedule: Try to keep your pet’s feeding and exercise routine as regular as possible. Pets thrive on consistency, and this can help minimise any stress or anxiety caused by the holiday chaos.
- Quality Time: Even if you’re busy, ensure you carve out some time each day to play with or cuddle your pet. This can help reassure them that they are not forgotten amidst the festivities.
2. Create a Safe Space
- Quiet Retreat: With the influx of guests and loud celebrations, your pet might appreciate a quiet space where they can escape the noise. This could be a cozy corner of your home with their favourite blanket and toys.
- Stress-Reducing Products: Consider products like pheromone diffusers or calming chews for pets prone to anxiety.
3. Holiday Decorations and Pets
- Tree Safety: Ensure your Christmas tree is stable to prevent it from toppling over. Avoid tinsel and ornaments that could be choking hazards, and keep wiring out of reach to prevent chewing.
- Plant Precautions: Many holiday plants such as poinsettias, mistletoe, and holly are poisonous to pets. Keep these out of reach or opt for pet-safe artificial alternatives.
4. Mind the Festive Food
- Avoid Toxic Treats: Chocolate, sweets with xylitol, and other holiday treats can be dangerous for pets. Ensure these are kept away from curious paws.
- Table Scraps: While it’s tempting to share your festive feast, fatty scraps and bones can be harmful to your pet. Stick to their regular diet and consider pet-safe treats instead.
5. Managing Guests and Gatherings
- Prep Your Pet: If your pet is not used to being around a lot of people, prepare them gradually. Consider short meet-and-greets before the big holiday parties.
- Guest Guidelines: Inform your guests ahead of time about your house rules when it comes to your pets, such as not feeding them table scraps or leaving doors open.
6. Holiday Hazards
- Gift Wrappings: Keep ribbons, strings, and wrapping paper away from pets, as these can cause intestinal blockages if ingested.
- Batteries and Small Toys: These common stocking stuffers can be a serious health risk if swallowed. Keep them out of your pet’s reach at all times.
7. Travel Considerations
- Pet Sitters: If you’re traveling, book a trusted pet sitter well in advance. Provide them with all the necessary information to keep your pet’s routine as normal as possible.
- Traveling with Pets: Ensure your pet is comfortable with travel. Pack their essentials, and keep their health records handy. Always use a secure pet carrier.
The Christmas holidays should be a joyful time for everyone in the family, including our four-legged members. With a little preparation and consideration for their needs and habits, we can ensure that our pets have a festive season that’s merry and bright too!
By maintaining their routine, securing a safe space, and being mindful of holiday hazards, we give the gift of comfort and joy to our beloved pets. And don’t forget, Paw Pals are available to help with your pets, should you be away over any part of the Christmas period.Like this comment