Heritage animal hospital

Veterinary Wellness Blog

Holiday Tips for Pets

Somehow, we blinked, and it is now the end of the year. December can be one of the most wonderful and busiest months. Preparing for the holidays may include shopping for gifts, wrapping presents, menu planning, hanging decorations, and maybe fishing the cat out of the tree. For our furry family members, this time of year can bring new hazards and extra stress. Below are few holiday tips for pets so everyone in your home will have a merry and joyous time!


A Pet-Safe Holiday Gathering

Uncle Ned can tell the best jokes, but he may stress your pet out. More people doesn’t always equal more love. If you plan on having a houseful, make sure to set some ground rules. These could include:

  • Keep your pet’s normal routine and provide enough exercise to help everyone feel calmer.
  • Give your pet their own quiet space to retreat to help ease anxiety and give them a break. Make sure the room has a bowl of fresh water and a place to cuddle up.
  • If you’re looking for a little help while you are managing the party, feel free to ask your animal-loving guests if they would like to give your pets extra attention and exercise.
  • Ask guests who are spending the night as well as the usual occupants of the house to make sure medications are securely stored and out of reach from any nosy nellies.

Holiday Hazards for Pets

The holidays can also produce more hazards. Your pet may ingest foreign or hazardous objects, including toxic plants or foods, which may require surgery for their removal. Prevent these common pet emergencies by learning which items could cause issues.

Common Hazardous Holiday Foods

  • Chocolate
  • Garlic
  • Onion
  • Xylitol (found in toothpaste, gum, peanut butter, and more)
  • Alcohol

Common Hazardous Holiday Plants

  • Amaryllis
  • Lily
  • Mistletoe
  • Poinsettia
  • Holly

New Year Celebrations

As you ring in the new year, keep in mind that if your pet accidentally ingests a string of confetti, it may become lodged and require surgical removal. Noise poppers and fireworks can wow your guests but terrify your pet and possibly cause damage to their sensitive ears. It might be best to keep pets in a secure, safe, and escape-proof room until after the celebration ends.

Be Prepared

The best holiday tip for your pets is to be prepared. As much as we try, some things can’t be prevented, and accidents happen. If you suspect your pet has ingested something poisonous, call the Pet Poison Helpline at (855)764-7661 or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888)426-4435.

Keep a 24/hour emergency pet number on hand as well. We have a few recommendations on our website. Not sure if it is an emergency? It’s better to be safe than sorry, so feel free to reach out to us. If it’s an emergency to you, then it is an emergency to us.

Everyone at Heritage Animal Hospital hopes you have a safe and merry holiday!

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12624 Base Lake Road
Maple Grove, MN 55369

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Sat: 7:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.