Holiday Stressed Pets

Dog Christmas

As holidays approach we are more busy than usual. Shopping, preparing food, decorating, greeting guests, cleaning, just to mention some of the chores.

Some of our pets view this as an exciting, happy time. Others are disturbed by all the activity. Our pets sense our excitement and all the stress we may feel and they react to it.

We have less time to devote to them. They are exercised less, they may be eating inappropriate foods often offered by guests in spite of the fact that you’ve told them (the guests) not to do this. You may be stressed to the point where you scream and curse over minor mishaps. Although it may not be directed at them, the tone of your voice and your anger transmits itself to your pets and frightens them.

Many dogs will take all this in stride, but cats can be more sensitive. Cats often find hiding places to escape the situation. You can help by planning ahead and prepare a room or places where cats can find peace. If your dog is timid and easily upset by all the ruckus, make sure there’s a safe get-away in the house for him/her too. Place something that has your smell with them and be sure they have fresh water.

Exercising your pets before visitors are scheduled to arrive helps to release a lot of their energy. Try keeping to their routines such as feeding times, keeping walking and play as normal as possible. This will help lower the stress level for everyone. And it will give you a break from all the to-do.

If you’ve decided to board you pet, it’s a good idea to familiarize him/her with the facility beforehand. Have a couple of trial runs before the boarding date and bring familiar items along – toys & blankets. This will help reduce the stress of being away from you.

Keep it as simple and jolly as you can and it will rub off on your pets and make you happy too.

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