Twelve Thoughts on Pets for the Holidays

  1. Do not give pets for holiday presents. Get a pet one month before or one month after the holidays.
  2. If you get a puppy as a present, allow him to rest or he may ‘run out of gas’ and end up with low blood sugar.
  3. Do not allow your pets to eat holiday treats like chocolate or cookies.
  4. Bones from beef or turkey can get stuck in the gut of hungry dogs and may need to be surgically removed.
  5. If you are traveling with your pets on airlines, be sure to have the required paperwork, including health certificates, needed to board the plane.
  6. If you are taking pets to visit family for the holidays, pack all needed medications and food.
  7. Dogs and cats love presents as much as we do. Buy safe gifts and stay away from hard chew toys like antlers, beef bones, and anything hard enough to break their teeth.
  8. Remember that foods with xylose as a sugar substitute can be toxic, as well as raisins, grapes, and decorative plants.
  9. Exotic pets, like lizards, have special needs. Be sure you have studied all of the equipment needed to be successful with your new iguana or bearded dragon. Full-spectrum light is essential for these pets. Special food additives are critical. Call your veterinarian for advice before buying these animals.
  10. Many birds are not seed-eaters. Investigate what type of cage and what foods are best prior to buying.
  11. Make sure you have a phone number for a veterinarian handy in case problems arise in the hustle and bustle of the holidays.
  12. Finally, enjoy your pets because they are a very important part of your family!


David J. Smith, VMD

Bay Road Animal Hospitals