3 Tips to Pet-Proof the Apartment for the Holidays

Author: Lauren Ross

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The smell of freshly baked pies and the glow of the Christmas tree can make anyone excited for the holiday season, including your pets.  Dogs and cats can become incredibly nosy during Christmas, and may confuse your winter wonderland snowman plushy for a chew toy if you’re not watching. During this joyous time, it’s important to keep your pets safe from toxic plants, hazardous décor, and foods that can make them extremely ill. Follow these tips to help pet-proof the apartment for the holidays!

1. Barricade the Base of the Tree

Dogs and cats in the apartment are going to be inquisitive about the Christmas tree, just like every new thing you bring home. When you’re not looking, they’ll head for the tree, which can be problematic if your pets get a hold of the lights, ornaments, garland, or gifts. The water basin can make your fur-kid sick if ingested. The sap and needles aren’t good for the animal, so wrap the tree skirt tightly around the base. A baby gate or play pen works great to keep snooping pets away from the tree.

2. Elevate Holiday Plants and Decorations

Nothing says Christmas like a beautiful arrangement of Poinsettias nestled on the fireplace, or fresh garland draped elegantly over the mantle. These holiday plants are stunning, yet very toxic to pets and may cause illness and discomfort if exposed.  Tinsel is another festive decoration that can cause a beloved pet to become sick. So, if you can, avoid using tinsel to trim the tree. If you can’t imagine the holidays without these floras and decorations, keep them high off the ground where your pets can’t get into it.

3. Make Food and ‘Nog Inaccessible  

Pies, cookies, and homemade eggnog are tasty treats of the holiday season, and should be enjoyed with family and friends. Eliminate pet temptation by keeping food out of their reach. Cats are attracted to the milky base of eggnog, so cover the serving bowl and ladle when the ‘nog is not being consumed. Chocolate is another food that is toxic to household pets. Desserts that contain chocolate, or any others sweets, should be kept covered and set far back on the counter where they can’t jump up and knock it over.

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