Hey there, pet owners! The holidays are almost upon us, and we know that your hands are full with last-minute Christmas shopping and decorating the house for the holidays.
But before you start decking up the Christmas tree with string lights and tinsels and hanging Christmas wreaths on doorways, take a minute to pause and think: are your holiday decorations pet-safe?
Common holiday decorations items such as ornaments, tinsels, wreaths, and candles are not safe for our pets, especially if one has a cat that loves to pounce and climb on things or a dog that loves chewing on new items.
So then, how to decorate your home so that you can have a festive and fur-friendly holiday? In this article, we will talk about safe Christmas decorations for pets that will make this a happy and healthy holiday for pets and people alike. So, let’s dive right in.
Creating A Fur-friendly Home For The Holidays
The holidays can be an exciting time but also stressful for our furry friends. Making some simple changes around the house will help ensure your pets stay safe and happy this season. In this section, we have talked in depth about safe and unsafe Christmas decorations for pets.
Remove Choking Hazards
Dogs and cats love to chew and paw at shiny, dangling objects. Keep them away from small ornaments, festive figurines, tinsel, wrapping paper and ribbons, and lights that could pose a choking risk if chewed or swallowed.
Opt for larger, shatterproof ornaments and place them higher up on the tree where pets can’t reach. String lights and fairy lights go a long way in brightening the house up for holidays, but they also pose certain risks. For instance, your pets can get entangled in them and may not be able to free themselves.
Use secure fixtures for your lights so that your cat can’t pounce on them and pull them down. If you have a dog or cat that likes to chew on electrical wires, then consider adding a protective PVC cover to minimize the risk of them getting electrocuted.
Keep Plants Out Of Reach
Although beautiful, many popular holiday plants like poinsettias, mistletoe, holly, and lilies are toxic to pets. Keep all plants well out of your pets’ reach, or consider using artificial greenery.
If you are getting a live Christmas tree such as pine, then try to keep pets away from the tree. The sharp needle-shaped pine leaves can injure or puncture their mouth or their stomach when ingested. In addition, you should also make sure that your dog or cat doesn’t drink the tree water as it contains a lot of harmful toxins. You can put up a barrier around the tree to block their access to the water.
Cats have a tendency to climb up to higher places. So don’t forget to secure your Christmas tree properly so that your cat cannot topple it over and get hurt in the process.
Distract Your Pets To Keep Them Away From Holiday Decoration
Our pets tend to stick their noses into exactly those things that are dangerous for them. So, along with putting up safe Christmas decorations for pets, you also need to keep them distracted. It will prevent them from getting into contact with anything that can cause them harm.
Moreover, with extra activity and guests around the house, pets may feel stressed or restless. So make sure your pets have a space to get away from it all with food puzzles, treat dispensing toys, beds, scratching posts, litter boxes, and anything else to keep them occupied. You can also check out some fun Christmas activities for pets that will keep them engaged and allow you to include your pets in your holiday celebrations.
Watch The Trash
Pets love getting into the trash, especially when there are lots of delicious-smelling leftovers and scraps. Use lidded trash cans and consider taking the trash out more frequently during the holiday season. Keep an eye out for bones, fat trimmings, nutshells, and other items that could be choking hazards if eaten. You should also check out what seasonings dogs can have.
Give Your Pets Extra Love
With so much going on, don’t forget to spend one-on-one time with your pets. Give them some extra playtime, walks, grooming, and affection. Giving them extra attention and making them feel secure and cared for will make the holidays more enjoyable for your fur babies and you alike.
Pet-safe Alternatives For Festive Decor
Decorating for the holidays when you have pets means being extra careful about what you put up around the house. Many popular decorations can be choking hazards or even poisonous to curious cats and dogs. So, it is important to know about pet-safe alternatives for decorating your home during the holiday season.
Here are a few pet-safe alternative decoration ideas:
- Shatterproof or soft ornaments: Use either shatterproof ornaments or soft ornaments for hanging on your Christmas tree, especially on the branches that your pets can easily reach. In addition, don’t hang ornaments that are too tiny so as to avoid choking hazards. You can also make ornaments made of food items such as popcorn, cranberry, or pet treats.
- LED lights: Battery-operated LED lights give off no heat, and the cords are easy to secure to walls or behind furniture.
- Natural aromatic items: Forget scented candles or potpourri, which can be toxic to pets. Instead, use cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, dried oranges or apples. Bundle natural, pet-safe spices and citrus for a festive aroma without the risk of flames or essential oils.
- Faux or dried fall foliage: Artificial or dried leaves, branches, and florals provide an autumnal accent without the mess or risk of a curious pet nibbling on the real thing.
While decorating for the holiday season, focus on natural, pet-friendly decor like fake foliage, shatterproof ornaments, and flameless candles. You should also avoid anything with small items that could be choking hazards. With a little creativity and effort on your part, you can design a stylish space for the holidays that keeps pets safe, secure and part of the seasonal fun.
Your cat will thank you for not dangling tinsel within pouncing distance, and your dog will appreciate not having an upset tummy from gobbling up fallen treats.
By putting up safe Christmas decorations for pets this season, you’ll give yourself peace of mind and give your four-legged family members the gift of a safe, joyful holiday in a place they can call home. It will also give you peace and enable you to enjoy the holiday season without constantly worrying about your fur babies. Happy Holidays!
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