A Large Grey Cat

There are many dangers to watch out for during the holidays. We often talk about the most obvious ones. I wanted to talk specifically about situations to be aware of when you have guests over to visit.

Open doors. When there are lots of people coming in and out you have to keep vigilant not to let animals sneak past. If possible, use gates to section off the house so that human guests can go out the door without worrying about animals running out.

Medication. If you have any overnight guests ask them to place their medications on a counter or table. Don’t leave them sitting in a suitcase or bag on the floor where pets and children might get into them.

Sugar-Free Gum and Candy. Xylitol, the sweetener used in sugar free candy, is highly toxic to animals. Make sure that animals don’t have access to candy and gum. The last thing you want to deal with is a trip to the emergency vet.

Change in Routine. If your pet appears stressed with all the extra activity don’t be surprised. Animals are sensitive to routine and a drastic change (like long term house guests) can cause stress. Give your pet their own quiet spot so that they can get away from all the activity. You might even use it yourself!

Flammable materials. Creating ambiance for your holiday dinner is an important part of your planning. After your dinner is over make sure to blow out the candles and pack away the matches and lighters. If you have a fire in your fireplace put a grate up to keep pets and guests safe.

Edible or Scented Presents. Any tasty treats that are wrapped up need to be kept out of reach of pets. Animals can’t resist a good smell (or a mystery!). Keep everyone happy by placing those delicious treats in a safe place.


Before your guests come over explain to them that you have pets and what kind you have. You don’t want your guests having allergic reactions to your furry family members. Make sure you spend extra time with your pet during the busy holiday season. They’ll love getting to be with you, and you’ll enjoy getting a small break from the hustle and bustle.