We are already in the holiday season, and we wanted to remind you of some things to consider so your dogs and cats can enjoy the holidays (safely) as well as you.
WHAT TO CONSIDER IN GENERAL?
Secure the Christmas tree to avoid it from falling and possibly hurting your dog or cat.
Use decorations of materials that don’t break easily. Putting them on higher parts of the tree is also helpful.
Use battery lights and put the control on a higher part of the tree.
Don’t give them away from your food. It is better to prepare them a special meal they can actually eat.
Create and secure a quiet space at home where they can feel safe.
Close the main doors to prevent them from escaping if scared.
If you have guests, tell them what they shouldn’t do to keep your dog and cat safe.
Comfort your dog and cat if they get scared or anxious.
If you prefer a natural Christmas tree, consider that pine trees are toxic to dogs and cats, so be aware that they don’t eat them.
Also, if it is a natural tree, remember to constantly change its water, and also be aware of your dog and cat to avoid drinking it (they could get sick, and the water can have bacteria or fertilizer from the tree).
It doesn’t matter if it is a natural or artificial tree; ensure you secure it and it is steady to avoid falling.
LIGHT AND CANDLES
Don’t light up candles within reach of your dogs and cats to avoid burns and fires. Remember also that cats are very susceptible to strong smells, so avoid them.
Use the right candle holders over stable surfaces; be aware of them, and don’t leave them unattended. Turn them off if you are going out or can’t pay attention.
Place the cables of the lights securely, avoid them freely hanging, and plug them off every time you leave your home.
If you use battery lights, ensure the control is not within reach of your dogs and cats. Be sure they are not easy for your pets to grab or bite.
If you have cats, avoid putting tinsel garlands. Cats love shiny things, and these things are attractive to play with.
The material of these garlands is toxic, and if your cat eats it, it can get to its stomach and obstruct the digestive tract.
FOOD DURING THE HOLIDAYS
If you want to spoil your dog and cat with something special to eat, pick a healthy treat that is natural, yummy, and safe for them.
Prepare a special snack using an interactive toy, filling it with their food or natural/healthy treats.
Don’t give your dog and cat food leftovers. Remember that fat, spicy food, and cooked bones are dangerous for them.
Remember that chocolate and sugar are bad for your dog and cat. Same with anything sweetened with Xylitol (which is toxic for them).
Make sure that your dog and cat don’t get close to the food table and manage to steal food.
Make sure that the trash cans aren’t easy to open for them.
Don’t leave your alcoholic drink unattended or in a spot that is easy to reach by your dog and cat.
Be sure your dog and cat don’t drink alcohol.
PARTIES AT HOME
SOUNDS AND NOISE
Remember that dogs and cats are susceptible to loud noises, so avoid fireworks, firecrackers, bulges, etc.
If your dog and cat suffer from high anxiety about noises, consult previously with a professional about how you can handle/approach this kind of event.
If your dog and cat are very nervous or anxious, prepare them a quiet and safe space: take them to their favorite rest spot in the house, put some tranquilizing music on, a diffuser with lavender or Bach flowers, and even a bit of natural relaxing balm in their paws. It is recommended to close windows and make them some kind of cave so they can feel safer. You can also use pheromones beforehand to help them relax even more.
Give your dog and cat comfort if they get afraid; don’t leave them alone.
Remember that fireworks scare animals, so ensure your house’s entrances are locked and closed to avoid your dogs and cats getting out scared.
If you have visited at home, remember to be aware of them and tell them beforehand any rules, conditions, or special treatment they will need with your dog and cat (petting rules, games, food, how to treat them in general).
Let your guests know about the “rules of the house.” For example, leave the doors closed and medication stored, don’t throw food to the floor, and leave the toilet lid down.
Leave a quiet space for your dog and cat aside from the party. Let them have their own space to rest and eat and have fresh food and water.
Don’t force your animals to interact with your guests; let your dog and cat decide if they want to.
Ana, Maca and Maia
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We started this blog as a way to share our love for animal wellbeing. My momager Ana & I believe in the saying: “sharing is caring” and in the magic of the doggo-cat & hooman bond. We hope you get inspired with our content and our adventures.