The holiday season can be a fun time for both people and their pets, especially if pet owners are aware of a few common sense pet safety tips to make sure the holidays are happy and safe for their furry friends. With all of those yummy human foods and beverages sitting around the house, not to mention trees, decorations, and gift wrapping supplies, pet owners should take a few extra precautions to make sure their dogs and cats don’t end up at the vet’s office this holiday season!


Keep both liquid and solid forms of potpourri and other home fragrances away from pets. Also be sure to never leave pets unattended around lit candles.

Make sure your tree is stable and secure to prevent it from toppling over with rambunctious pets around. Consider placing it near a wall and tying it to something stable like a doorframe.

Some holiday plants like amaryllis, mistletoe, poinsettia, balsam, lilies, and holly can be toxic to pets if eaten. Check the ASPCA’s list of plants that are toxic to pets before bringing a holiday plant into the home.


Keep an eye on pets during holiday parties to make sure they don’t ingest any toxic or overly rich people foods and drinks. This includes things like eggnog with alcohol, chocolate and other sweets, foods that contain nuts, raisins or currants, fatty table scraps like turkey skin or gravy, and gum or mints that contain xylitol.

Skip the tinsel when decorating your tree if you have cats. It can damage your cat’s intestinal tract if swallowed. You should also avoid tempting your dog with edible tree decorations like strings of popcorn or cranberries.

Keep an eye on your curious pets…especially cats…when wrapping presents. Strings and ribbons are fun to play with but can be harmful if swallowed.


Is your pet tempted to chew those extra extension cords you have around the house during the holidays? Buy pet-proof extension cords or spray them with bitter apple to deter chewing.

If your dog or cat gets stressed around unfamiliar people and noises, make sure to have a safe, quiet retreat set up for your pet to stay during holiday parties.



18 thoughts on “Holiday Pet Safety Tips

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