Making Sure Your Pets Have a Happy Holiday

Christmas is only a few days away, and between parties, family, traveling, decorations, sweets and gifts Christmas can be as stressful as it is special. To your pet, this time can be full of new sights and smells, confusion and new ways to get into trouble.

As you make your holiday plans this year, take a look from your four-legged family member's point of view. Keeping life safe and stress free for your pets during the holidays is simply applying the same common sense that you practice the rest of the year.


Take a look at all that you just bought or unboxed for another year: Christmas tree, ornaments, maybe candles, but definitely lots of wires and, unfortunately, the hazards they all may cause your pet.

  • That tree is plenty big and drying out every day, losing pine needles everywhere: Secure the base and the top of the tree to keep it from getting knocked over. Pine needles can be a digestion hazard if eaten, so take steps to keep the tree from drying out: make a straight cut to the trunk before placing it in water, keep it watered and use cooler LED lights.
  • Consider the ornaments: Remove the breakable and edible ones like fine glass or popcorn strands.
  • About tinsel: If you have pets, think twice about buying tinsel. For example, if you see a cat with partially swallowed tinsel, don't tug on it. The tightening of that string in your cat could knot in your cat's digestion system and cause peritonitis, an inflammation of the thin tissue lining the intestinal wall. Instead take your cat to the vet.
  • Wires, wires, everywhere, and not a toy to chew: With all those lights and other decorations, have you made sure you secured all the extra wires and power cords from your pets, so they don't chew on one and electrocute themselves?

Holiday Sweets

Chocolate, rich food, fatty food and holiday plants can be poisonous to your dog or cat, causing illness or even death. Coffee, alcohol and nicotine are also dangerous.

Keep food and drinks with these ingredients away from your pets, prevent easy access and put them in a sealable container instead of out on a tray. Also, clean up messes soon after that big party, before your pet has a chance to root through it.

Alleviating stress

In addition to your pet's physical health, consider his mental health, and take measures to alleviate extra stress that comes from a change to the routine.

Give your pet a quiet place to hide out like a back bedroom with his familiar pet bed, toy and food and water.

If you are going to have unfamiliar people and especially kids around your pet, take the time to talk about bite prevention with them and ensure that time together is supervised. You know if your pet doesn't like to be bothered while eating or if he doesn't want to be picked up, so be sure to share that knowledge.

Traveling and Guests

If you are taking the whole family, including Spike, to visit relatives or having relatives as extended guests, they may not be aware of common pet-proofing precautions. If you are a guest, look out for harmful chemicals like that antifreeze on the garage floor your pet can get into. If you have a guest, remind them to keep any medication away when not in use.

These are all examples of ways to avoid pitfalls that could occur if you don't take a minute to consider how holiday festivities may affect your pet. Before the big event make a list of how your pet will be affected and how you can help them, and every species of your family will be better prepared to enjoy the holidays.

At, Jay Acker's editorial group makes materials for conducting weekly safety meetings, safety training programs, posters and other items.

By Play Admin on Dec 15, 2012 at 12:00 am 0 Comments

The official White House holiday cards were just sent out and like last year, First Dog Bo is featured on the cover. Michelle Obama has said in the past, “He is my son. He is a very sweet dog.” We love how he is such an integral part of their family! Not only does he grace the front of the card, his name and paw print appear alongside the rest of the First Family’s signatures too!

Bo has been extremely busy this holiday season. The White House released this adorable video of him inspecting all of the holiday decorations before the official unveiling (which he also helped with). Look at those fluffy paws!

In addition to his First Dog duties, Bo is also the inspiration for many of the decorations! A life size replica of him is the centerpiece of the East Garden Room. To top it off, there’s also more than 40 handmade “Bo-flakes” ornaments hang from the trees throughout the White House!

While not on such a grand scale, Momo is also a big part of our holiday decorations at home. She adorns our Christmas greetings and we have special pug ornaments just for her.

Do you have holiday decorations in honor of your pets?

By Play Admin on Dec 06, 2012 at 2:11 pm 0 Comments

Happy Chinese New Year! 2012 is the Year of the Dragon, which is often considered the luckiest in the Chinese zodiac. In western culture, the dragon is usually depicted as a scary monster - but in eastern culture, the dragon is very auspicious and symbolizes power and strength!

Chinese New Year is one of our favorite holidays, it's just a great time with all of our family and friends. Momo particularly loves it, because she gets spoiled with yummy treats and a lot of time at the dog park!

From all of us at P.L.A.Y., we wish you and your loved ones a happy, healthy and prosperous Year of the Dragon!

By Play Admin on Jan 23, 2012 at 10:30 am 0 Comments