The holidays are here! And among all the lights and festive decor are some real hazards for your pet. Here are four ways to keep your furry ones safe this holiday season.

  1. Keep holiday plants secured and out of reach. Some of the plants we love to bring indoors at the holidays are toxic if eaten! These include poinsettias, holly, mistletoe, and lillies. Keep an eye on your pet when they are around these plants. If they are new to your home, your pets are bound to investigate the new smells.
  2. Make sure to keep people food and treats out of reach. Many popular holiday foods are dangerous for pets, including onions, garlic, chocolate, alcohol, and even nuts! Check out our holiday foods pets should avoid post for more details. Even the best-behaved animals can be tempted by a plate within reach, so always monitor your pets around holiday foods or crate them if you have guests over and can’t keep a good eye on them. Make sure your trash cans have lockable lids as well, and that guests know how to use them.
  3. Don’t leave your pets alone with decorations out. Even if you have a baby gate around your Christmas tree, a determined pet will still reach it! Breakable ornaments are a hazard if they fall, and decor can also take out other items, such as lamps or candles, when it falls down. All these shiny, weird-smelling items are new to your pet and they will want to investigate. Even if your pet is always on their best behavior when you’re gone, don’t leave them out unsupervised with all these new things around, even if they are just in the next room.
  4. Provide a safe and quiet space for your pets when entertaining guests. Loud music and lots of people in your home may be fun for you, but it’s stressful to your pet. Find a quiet place for them to be when hosting guests for the holidays. Make sure any guests staying at your home are aware of your pet and how to interact with them, especially if they are reactive or take time to warm up to new people. Never leave a houseguest unattended with your pet.