With the holidays right around the corner, you’re probably planning the party of the year. Between choosing appetizers and shopping for last-minute gifts, take a few moments to plan on keeping your pets safe and happy during the festivities.
Make the Front Door Inaccessible
With holiday guests coming and going all day, the front door is sure to be an exciting spot. Many dogs take it upon themselves to alert you of guests with loud barking, while others can’t resist over enthusiastic greetings, pawing at your guests’ fancy holiday outfits and knocking over small children. Both dogs and cats may take the open door as an opportunity to flee.
Keep your pets as far away from the front door as possible. Use baby gates, crates or separate rooms to keep them safe. Only allow your pets to greet your guests once they have calmed down.
If your dog jumps on people, keep them on a harness and leash, letting them drag the leash through the house until all guests have arrived. Hold your dog’s leash to keep them from jumping, and use treats to encourage them to sit before your guests give them love.
Tell Holiday Guests to Keep Food Away from Pets
Your guests will want your dog to like them, so they might sneak table scraps to earn their love. It’s important to lay ground rules, and let your guests know that they should not feed your pets without permission. You can offer dog-safe treats like carrots and unseasoned chicken to help your friends and family members bond with your pets.
Many dogs are clever enough to figure out who will sneak them scraps anyway. They might beg from strangers, hoping they don’t know the rules. It’s best to crate your dog during mealtimes to make sure they’re not sniffing around for handouts under the table.
Supervise Guests’ Kids and Pets
It’s fun to watch your pets bond with kids and catch some adorable Facebook photo opportunities. Teach kids to offer pets treats with an open palm, and only with permission.
Never utter the words, “Oh, he’d the perfect dog, he’d never bite anybody.” This is simply never true. Any dog can get scared and bite. It’s your responsibility to make sure your pets have safe spaces to retreat where kids will not follow them. For dogs, this could be a separate room or a crate. For cats, this could be past a baby gate or in your bedroom.
Don’t depend on parents to watch their kids around your pets when you’re not looking. Your guests may get caught up in food and conversation, and it only takes a moment for something to go very, very wrong.
Celebrating the Holidays Away from Home?
Enjoy the holidays with the peace of mind that only comes from hiring professional, bonded and insured pet sitting services. With customized care and daily updates, you’ll know that your pets are getting the best possible care.
To schedule up a Meet & Greet, give us a call at (240) 221-5335 or get in touch via email.