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tips for sharing the seasonal joy with pets

  • Dr. Kim
  • Posted by Dr. Kim Smyth on
    Staff Veterinarian and Pet Health Writer of Petplan


The holidays are rapidly approaching!  We have already talked about why it is not the wisest idea to try to introduce a new pet during the busy holiday season, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t try to involve the four-legged friends we already have in our holiday festivities!

First, let me do my job by reminding you that even though we may indulge our cravings for cookies, candy and big holiday meals, this is one holiday perk we should not share with our pets. Fatty foods, chocolate and even sugar-free candies can be dangerous to our pets, leading to pancreatitis or worse. Let’s explore some healthier ways to share the holiday spirit with our canine and feline family members:

Holiday Cards

Including pets in photos for holiday cards is now fairly common, and very adorable! In fact, a recent holiday survey conducted by Petplan shows that 62.5% of respondents said they include their pets in their family holiday greeting card photos! Extra points for dressing Fido in reindeer antlers, and double-extra points if you can get your cat to wear a Santa beard! 

The Gift of Giving

Hopefully your furry family members have been on the “nice” list for most of the year, so they deserve Christmas and/or Hanukkah presents, too! Pet beds for cats and dogs look great under the tree on Christmas morning, or perhaps a new collar or two will help your pet sparkle well beyond the holidays. It is also a good opportunity to refresh your stock of catnip toys, tennis balls and Frisbees. For a cat who has been very, very good this year, consider a cat tree. Cats love perching up high and looking down on their territory!

Last but not least, if you're already a Petplan family member but have any friends or family members that could benefit from the peace of mind that Petplan pet insurance helps bring, you can refer them to Petplan and even get a $25 gift card for yourself if they enroll! 

Treats to Eat

While you should keep human treats well beyond paw’s reach, there is no reason not to include your pets in the holiday baking spree. Check out the December edition of the fetch! health newsletter for a great recipe for Zucchini Tarts, perfect for satisfying your pet’s holiday snack craving.

Don't Wait to Donate

Perhaps the best gift you can give your pet is helping the lives of his fellow animal cousins. Your donation to a local shelter will provide meals and shelter for other pets who are not as lucky as yours.

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Chris AshtonCo-Founder and Co-CEO of Petplan Pet Insurance
vet tip of the week

Visit your vet at least once a year to keep your pet protected from preventable diseases.