How to Care for Your Pet During the Holidays

July 24, 2018

The month of December can be a very challenging time for many cats and dogs. They can develop anxiety or fear when dealing with new sounds, smells and schedules. The following are a few tips that will help you take care of your pet during the holiday season.

Pets and Christmas

The Christmas season is a very special time of the year that has a lot of decorations, visits from new people and new smells that come into the home. In addition to having new objects placed on the floor, such as the Christmas tree, your pet will have to deal with your friends and family that come over for long visits.

You may be wondering how animals react to these sudden changes. Your pet may become stressed by these new things he sees, hears, and smells. A good way for pet to get used to these changes is by receiving more attention from their human family.

 Kitten playing under a Christmas tree

Apart from the new scenery and smells in your home, they most likely will be more noise coming from traffic outside of your home. All of this may be too much for a dog or cat to handle, so it’s a good idea to spend more quality time with your pet so he’ll be able to adapt better to the holidays. By doing so, your pet will be more physically, mentally and emotionally stable.

How to Take Care of Your Pet During the Holidays

The noise from fireworks may cause nervousness or aggression in your pet.  They may even become stressed to the point of losing control of their vowels and bladder. Often for animals, noise can be associated with danger, rather than celebration.

 Cat playing with an ornament

Your pet may resort to hiding in a corner, or under the table or bed. If they become too anxious, they may try to find a way to escape away from the noise and confusion. Here are a few tips on how to care for your pet during the holidays.

    1. Identification tags

Your pet should be identifiable all year round, especially during the holiday season because they are more prone to escaping out of fear and anxiety. If people can easily identify your pet, there’s a much better chance you’ll be able to find him if he escapes.

Even if your animal is used to being outside, tying him up in the yard at this time of year probably is not the best idea. It’s better to put him in a quieter place where he will feel safe and protected.

    2. Play with your pet

Take some time out to help your pet get rid of any extra energy by spending more time playing with at home or taking him on an extra walk. That way he’ll be more rested and his body won’t negatively react to the overwhelming changes during the holidays.

    3. Let your pet hide

You have probably already noticed that animals want to hide when they are stressed or frightened. Instead of scolding your pet for trying to seek refuge, help him feel safe in a place where he can be comfortable and protected. You should also make sure to “pet proof” his temporary shelter by removing dangerous and breakable objects.

    4. Play music

Are you wondering what will help your pet feel more comfortable if he must spend the evening alone during the holidays? Perhaps some classical music playing in the background might be soothing.

Making sure your pet has something to eat and drink nearby will also help. Keeping his favorite toys, blankets and pillows nearby can also be useful.

    5. Use home remedies

You may want to do some research to find some natural remedies that will help your pet relax.  A Bach flower remedy or a homeopathic tranquilizer might be good choice for your animal. However, it is best to seek advice from someone who works at a pet food store or your pet’s veterinarian.