The month of December in Australia can be a stressful time for many dogs and cats. This period is packed with a whirlwind of events – the Christmas holiday season, summer school break, hot weather, family reunions, and travel plans.
Our homes can bring significant changes during Christmas. They become bustling with energy; the environment turns hot, decorations abound, lights flash, gifts are wrapped, and unfamiliar smells from visitors can all contribute to pet stress. Holidays with pets can be stressful too for pet owners.
For those spending their holidays with pets, here’s how to keep them calm this holiday season.
Tips for a Stress-Free Christmas
1. Ease into the festive decor
In Australia, Christmas preparations often start as early as October. While some may think this is too soon, it helps many Australians get ahead of the Christmas rush. However, it’s important to consider our furry friends at home. Decorating brings a lot of change to a pet’s environment. Gradually introducing decorations allows pets to adapt to their changing surroundings.
2. Plan your gatherings wisely
A house full of guests can be as exciting as it is stressful, and it’s no different for our pets. An easy trick? Introduce your guests to your pets gradually. Guests might be eager to befriend your pet, but it’s better to let the pets approach them in their own time.
While focusing on your guests, ensure your pets also have their own space. Create a safe area like a den or a room, equipped with a warm, cosy bed, so they have a place to retreat when the excitement gets too much. Remember, holidays with pets doesn’t come easy but it becomes fun and festive when we know how to handle situations.
3. Protect your pets from the heat
Summer in Australia can be unforgiving. Like us, the heat poses a significant health threat to pets during warmer months. Pets are susceptible to conditions like heat stress, heat exhaustion, and heatstroke, all of which are serious and potentially life-threatening. The warm months also remind us that it is also the tick season so we’ve written about the ways you can protect them from ticks and fleas!
To ensure stress-free holidays with pets, provide a cool space at home and monitor the room temperature. There are creative ways to keep your dog cool such as cooling pads, ice in their water bowls, cold treats, and swimming pools.
4. Bring pet essentials while travelling
Travelling for the festive season is a good way to celebrate. For those who plan to travel with their pets, ensuring their safety and comfort is important. Pets may face stressful situations such as environmental changes, crowds, and heat.
For a stress-free holidays with pets, remember to:
- Bring their toys to keep them occupied.
- Maintain their feeding and exercise routines.
- Scout for local walks, parks, and exercise areas in advance.
- Pack all your pet’s food, medications, and bedding.
- Have numbers for local emergency vets on hand.
Home is where our pets are
As pet owners, we truly embrace holidays with pets as they make excellent companions. They’re more than just pets; they’re family. For pet owners like us, wherever we spend our holidays, home is where our pets are.
To fully enjoy a stress-free holiday season, let Knose assist you. For any queries on pet behavior, nutrition, or health, our team of registered vet nurses is available on our 24/7 Pet Health Hotline. And if your pet encounters any difficulties, know that pet insurance with Knose can cover your needs, letting you enjoy a worry-free holiday season!