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The holiday season is a time to celebrate with friends — both fuzzy and not so fuzzy. Cold weather, decorations, and parties can create safety hazards for your pets. Help your pets stay out of trouble with these simple tips.

Cold Weather

Both cats and dogs are exposed to holiday hazards.De-icing products like salt can irritate a pets feet. Be aware where you walk them and wipe their paws and legs after coming inside. There are different paw covering products available with varying degrees of effectiveness. Most dogs resent having 'shoes' on and you are probably better off just avoiding icy, salted areas.

Holiday Decorations

Pets are curious creatures and will nibble, smell, and/or swallow new items in the house. Be especially aware of string-like decorations such as tinsel that can cause obstructions of the intestinal tract. Glass decorations can also be dangerous if broken or swallowed.


Pets, especially cats, love to chew on plants. Most plants will cause vomiting or diarrhea and a few can cause even bigger problems, especially lillies! Lillies can be very harmful to the kidneys. Also, Christmas tree water can be harmful if ingested.


The holidays bring visitors and relatives in abundance. Also, your schedule may change and you may be away more than normal. All of these changes in routine can lead to stress in your pet. Pets exhibit stress in different ways, they may hide, not eat, chew things, lick themselves more, urinate or defecate inappropriately and behave in a way that is not normal for them. Trying to remain as consistent as possible helps in addition to offering them a safe zone to go to when it is hectic.

Holiday Treats

Try to resist those sad puss n' boots eyes. Pets benefit from a consistent diet and can get into trouble with vomiting and diarrhea if offered a diet that is too rich. Meat with bones should never be offered. Bones can become stuck and can cause chips or fractures to the teeth.