Tips from Your Veterinarian for a Pet-Friendly Holiday Season

The holiday season is a bustling time, but it’s essential to consider your furry friends amidst the festivities. Dr. Benjamin Carter, Chief Medical Officer at Chewy Health, shares vital insights to ensure your pets stay healthy and happy this holiday season.

1. Match Gifts to Personality

Tailor gifts to your pet’s personality to avoid any mishaps. If your dog enjoys destroying plush toys, opt for durable options like Kong® or Nylabone®. Ensure toys and treats suit your pet’s size and dietary needs, especially if they have allergies. Puzzle feeders engage energetic pups, while senior dogs might appreciate orthopedic beds for joint comfort. For cats, choose interactive toys sans strings to prevent ingestion.

2. Prep for Travel

If you’re traveling with pets, prepare adequately. Ensure the carrier is comfortable, and they have access to water and food. Consult your vet for motion sickness or anxiety remedies. Familiarize pets with carriers or car rides beforehand to ease travel stress.

3. Create Safe Spaces for Guests

Not all pets are fond of visitors. Understand your pet’s response to strangers and designate a quiet, comfortable space away from the holiday buzz. Provide food, water, and a litter box if needed. Educate guests about feeding rules and potential toxic foods. Consult your vet for anxiety management if needed.

4. Cater to Senior Pets

Seniors need extra care during the holidays. Accommodate their limitations by providing orthopedic bedding, ramps, or steps for ease of movement. Plan more frequent rest stops for bathroom breaks during travel. Monitor interactions with younger kids and ensure a calm environment for their comfort.

5. Update Emergency Vet Information

Be prepared for emergencies. Update vet clinic hours, familiarize yourself with local emergency vets, and know common holiday toxins. Ensure sufficient medication refills and maintain vaccination records. Explore telehealth services like Chewy’s Connect with a Vet for immediate assistance.

FAQs: Encouraging Friendlier Behavior

If your cats hide from guests, create a calm environment for introductions. Allow pets to approach guests at their own pace, avoiding sudden movements or picking them up. Use treats or toys to entice interactions, but let the cat take the lead.

Ensure a safe and joyful holiday season for your pets by prioritizing their well-being amidst the celebrations. For further insights on pet safety this holiday, visit our pet holiday corner for valuable resources.

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