Your Guide to a Pet-Friendly Holiday Celebration

The holiday season is a time for joy and celebration with loved ones, including our pets. However, the festivities can sometimes pose unexpected hazards for our furry friends. So, how can we ensure this season is safe and enjoyable for them as well? Here are some helpful tips.

image: freepik

1. Safe Decorating

Decorations are a big part of holiday excitement, but it’s important to remember that not all decorations are pet-friendly. Avoid using small, sharp, or easily breakable items that may pose a risk to your pets. Tinsel and ribbons, while attractive, can cause harm if ingested. Also, make sure your Christmas tree is stable and out of reach from playful pets.

2. Food Safety

Holiday meals are something everyone looks forward to, but not all human foods are suitable for pets. Foods like chocolate, alcohol, onions, garlic, grapes, and raisins should be avoided. Instead, consider preparing some special pet-friendly treats so they can participate in the feast safely.

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3. Creating a Calm Space

Holidays can often bring a lot of noise and activity, which can be stressful for pets. Ensure they have a quiet and comfortable place to retreat to if they feel overwhelmed.

4. Plant Safety

Many common holiday plants, such as poinsettias, holly, and mistletoe, can be toxic to pets. Consider opting for pet-safe plants or artificial alternatives to keep your festive greenery safe for all.

5. Thoughtful Gift Giving

If you’re planning on giving your pet a gift, choose toys and treats that are suitable for their species, age, and size. Avoid toys with small parts that can be easily swallowed or torn apart.

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6. Maintain Routine

Despite the change in daily activities during the holiday season, try to keep your pet’s feeding, exercise, and sleep routines as normal as possible. This can help them stay calm and comfortable during the festivities.

7. Light Safety

Holiday lights can be a hazard for pets who like to chew. Keep light strings and extension cords out of reach, and never leave your pet alone in a room with lit candles.


By following these tips, you can ensure that your holiday celebrations are safe and enjoyable for all family members, including your pets. A bit of preparation and awareness can go a long way in creating a pet-safe holiday environment.





About the Author:
Wyatt Baggett is the Marketing Associate at Young-Williams Animal Center. With over five years of experience working with shelter pets and a passion for animal welfare, he enjoys creating informative content for pet parents. When he’s not working, Wyatt enjoys hanging out with his three rescue dogs, thrifting, and hunting down the best eats around Knoxville.