The holidays are often considered one of the happiest times of year. We gather together with family and loved ones while showing our appreciation for those that matter. From festive feasts to outdoor activities, we’ll be plenty busy spreading the love. But while you’re preoccupied with visiting family and unwrapping presents, it’s important to remember the safety and well-being of our four-legged family with these holiday pet tips.
1. Be mindful.
Not every human enjoys the holidays and our pets are no different. Sometimes the hustle and bustle of the occasion means a lot of stress for our pups. Between the crinkle of the paper to the influx of foot traffic, your dog may not be feeling the festive spirit. Even just the fact that things are moved around to make room for the festivities can send your dog into a tizzy. Pay attention to their behavior and be accommodating. If they’re not in the mood, designate a space where your dog can escape and be sure to give them plenty of attention while they’re hiding out in the corner of your bedroom.
2. Clean up your mess.
It was fun to rip open those packages and see the looks on everyone’s faces but make sure you clean up after yourself. Dogs will consume things if it piques their curiosity so be sure to clean up every last piece of wrapping paper and tape from the floor. It may be a tad inconvenient for some, but unleashing the broom or vacuum post-present time can help eliminate the small bits left behind. *The same goes for the pre-present wrapping time too!*
3. Keep the scented stuff up high.
In the same fashion as the paper goods, your dog will be intrigued by candles and potpourris that are spreading the festive smells throughout the house. If you want to keep your pets (and kiddos!) safe, it’s best to keep these items out of reach. Holiday plants are no different! Poinsettia sap can blister your dog’s mouth and cause an upset stomach. Mistletoe can also upset their stomach and can lead to heart failure. Your best bet is just to keep them far away from your pet!
4. Trees can spell disaster if you’re not careful.
That fancy new tree with all of the shiny balls may very well look like a giant toy to your furry family. The ornaments look like toys. The Christmas lights look like a chew toy. That water at the bottom of the tree filled with sugar, aspirin or other harmful preservatives is just waiting to be ingested. That tree may very well look as pretty laying down as it does standing up. If you want to keep your pet safe, you’ll want to keep them away from the tree. Corral-style baby gates keep a bit of distance between the pup and the tree.
5. Practice food safety.
Food safety doesn’t just apply to clean countertops and properly handled knives. All of that food sitting out for your guests is going to look like a feast to your pet. Be mindful that your dog doesn’t get into the sweets – especially the chocolate – or your boozy treats. Many of the spices involved in holiday cooking should be avoided by dogs and those leftover bones may cause more harm than good. If you want to give your dog a holiday treat, add some cooked green beans to their dinner bowl or put a little bit of peanut butter in their Kong toy.
6. Keep everyone warm and dry.
Just because your house is filled with extra guests this time of year doesn’t mean your dog should be left outside in inclement weather. While they’re more adapt to handling frigid temperatures than their human companions, they shouldn’t spend extended periods of times outdoors in rain, snow, or low temperatures. Allow them to enjoy some time frolicking through the mud we’ll undoubtedly have in Houston this Christmas and then wipe them down and bring them in with the family.
At Circle K9, we’re always looking out for the well being of your furry companions. From holiday pet tips to mid-summer pet tips, your friendly Houston boarding and training facility is here to provide you with the best care for your dog. If you have questions about boarding or training for your dog, contact us online or at (281) 259-3564 today.