tips for having a safe holiday with your pets

  1. Pet-proof the tree. If your pets are anything like mine, the tree is always a novelty, with fun dangly things that think they should be played with. Avoid putting fragile ornaments on your tree, and place ornaments high enough up that curious pups can't steal them or unknowingly knock them off with their tails. A gate around the tree may also help keeps pets away. Anchoring the tree to a wall provides extra support to prevent it from being knocked over.
  2. Avoid the temptation of shiny things. Avoid decorating your home or gifts with tinsel, string, or ribbon that could be ingested.
  3. Prepare for guests. Keep stranger-phobic pets safe and comfortable in a room away from visitors. For more social pets, doing a training refresher on politely greeting people at the door, as well as working on their stay and recall to prevent them from bolting out the door when people are coming and doing, can be helpful.
  4. Choose comfortable costumes. If your pet enjoys dressing up, make sure to pick costumes that your pet can move freely and breathe easily in. Never force your pet to wear something if they don't like to dress up.
  5. Skip the flowers. Some plants and flowers are toxic. Check the ASPCA toxic plant list if you're unsure.
  6. Use pet-safe winter chemicals. Antifreeze and many ice melt products are hazardous to pets. If you have these items in your home, keep them in a secure location where pets cannot access them.
  7. Secure lights and wires. Tape down extension cords and use cable organizers and ties to secure wires out of reach.
  8. Watch candles. Don't leave lit candles unattended.
  9. Pick up small toys. Keep batteries and small toy pieces off the floor so pets can't chew and swallow them.
  10. Practice food safety. Chocolate, cooked bones, onion, grapes, raisins, and nuts are dangerous for pets. If you feed your pets table scraps, limit their intake, especially of fatty and salty foods.
  11. Secure your trash. Yummy scraps are tempting and could be toxic. Even if your pet doesn't normally try to break into the garbage, it doesn't hurt to keep an eye out as they may be more tempted by the extra delicious foods that are being prepared during the holidays.
  12. Hire a sitter if your pet doesn't enjoy travel (or choose to stay home with them).


Don't forget to continue following the blog circle to read other pet photographers' tips on having a safe holiday season with your pets. Up next Jessica Wasik with Bark & Gold Photography ensures that both you and your dog have a happy and stress-free journey with eight tips for keeping your senior dog safe on holiday road trips.

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