As the days grow shorter and the nights, colder, visions of the holiday season begin to dance in our heads. There is a palpable sense of excitement that permeates the air. It is Christmas time! But with the magic of the holiday season comes the caveat of how to pay closer attention to our pets.
There has been much debate whether pets are keenly aware of the holidays or not. Well, whether they are or are not, there are quite a few decorations and things to cause harm to our pets. Here are 5 items of concern around the holidays that pet owners should be acutely aware of.
Indoor Christmas lights
Who doesn’t love the bright, sparkly tiny lights strewn across doorways and fire places. These tiny lights add a flare of holiday cheer that is hard to refute. Unfortunately those same tiny lights add a temptation too hard for our pets to ignore. As our furry babies gaze into the luminous abyss, they can’t help thinking of how something so beautiful must truly taste? The need for our pets to chew, bite, tussle, lick, stretch and any other means of sampling is simply too hard to walk away from. So…if you must put up those adorable tiny lights, make sure it is somewhere high enough and securely fastened.
Christmas trees are only served best with a ton of beautiful decorations. Tinsel, colorful hanging ornaments in various shapes and sizes, hooks, candy canes, and any other assortment of holiday fun. Sure, a beautifully decorated tree is eye candy to us pet parents. It helps supplant the idea of Christmas. But, our pets see it a bit differently than we humans. To our pets, when we set up our trees and decorate to the hilt, we essentially just set up the ultimate doggie playstation with no remote required.
So, when decorating your tree, keep in mind just how you’re going to keep your pet from playing with the decorations. Some suggest a tiny gate around the 6ft fir. Or perhaps, putting the ornaments a bit higher up to discourage your pet. Whichever you decide, keep in mind that our pet’s don’t see a beautifully handcrafted tree shining through an open window. Our pets see an endless array of fetch and they’ve come to play.
Will you smell that awesome scent?! I mean, who doesn’t LOVE the smell of Christmas Trees?! Sadly, that fresh cut tree can present clear and dangerous problems for our pets. Many trees, if not most, especially Noble Firs can excrete oils onto their branches. And with our pets inclined to chew a branch or three, it can cause stomach upset or worse a trip to the veterinarian. So, we strongly advise a sturdy gate or perimeter around the tree to prevent accidental digestion of the tree oils by your curious and playful pet.
Most trees today stand over 6ft, and many 8ft.Once erected, finding the most balanced placement is advantageous. Sometimes our pets like to test the idea of gravity and push or nudge a tree in fair play. And we probably don’t have to tell you what the aftermath looks like when an 8ft tree, fully adorned, comes crashing to your living room floor. It is wise to choose a strong and heavy tree base, and even consider wall straps in the event a base fails. Because nothing says fun more to our dogs, especially our larger breeds, than a full standing tree all shiny and ready to play!
Who doesn’t relish the thought of waking up Christmas morning and seeing all of those colorful presents under the tree! It’s a magical feeling unlike any other. But after the jolly fella lays down all of those presents,(wink-wink nudge-nudge) the presents become sitting ducks to our mischievous and curious pets. Waking Christmas morning to an array of shredded boxes, kinda takes all the fun and magic out of the moment. Therefore, before you fall asleep, you may want to consider quarantining your pet to an area far from the bottom of the Christmas tree. Otherwise, it is most likely that the presents are toast!
We love our pets as one of our family members and having them with us over the holidays is second to none. It’s just important that we pay heed to some of the tips above to ensure the safety and fun for our entire family and pets. After all, it is the most magical time of the year and our pets are a lot like children when it comes to being curious and playful. Be sure to watch out for your Santa paws and follow all safety precautions of the season.
The Plato Pet Treats Cycle of Virtue
The Cycle of Virtue can be defined like this: a chain of events in which one desirable occurrence leads to another which further promotes the first occurrence and so on resulting in a continuous process of improvement. We love our pets and want to provide the best we can for them, and when we bless them in this way, they continue to bless us with a better quality of life and increased lifespan. This is a beautiful thing.