Happy Paw-lidays!

Abby Tow, Managing Editor

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Picture it: you’re sitting around the Christmas tree, presents scattered about, the smell of hot cocoa faint in the air. You’re with your family, which for many includes more than just people. For my family, Christmas morning wouldn’t be complete without my sweet dog, Chloe, running around the living room. Here are some ideas on how to include your furry friends in holiday festivities.

Extravagant meals and home cooked favorites are a quintessential aspect of the holidays. So why shouldn’t your pet be involved? While you’re munching on family recipes, holiday ham, and Christmas cookies, your pet can snack as well. Freeze some peanut butter in a block of ice using an ice tray throw one to your pup while people are eating. You can make cookies for your pets, too. Many recipes suggest using apples, peanut butter, and pumpkin. For cats, sweet potato treats can also be a great alternative if you want to include your feline friends in the fun.

For some animals, the holidays can be a stressful time. While lots of dogs, just like mine, love company, new people in the house can upset dogs and create lots of anxiety for them. Make sure to keep an eye on your pets,as when animals become stressed, they can act out in potentially dangerous ways. Make sure small children aren’t irritating your animals, and let your pets outside often if they are outside animals so they can cool off.

For animals that can tolerate costumes, dress your pet up in a festive outfit! These can be functional and fashionable. If there’s snow outside, many pets needs coats anyway, but it sure doesn’t hurt if the coat just happens to make your animal look like an elf. You can also take a simple route like I do with my dog. Tie a holiday ribbon or bandana around your pet’s neck for some subtle festive flair.

All in all, the holiday are about family. It only makes sense to make sure our pet part of what makes these festive times special.