Most American pet owners are more excited to spend the holidays with their four-legged friends than with their own family members. Many also will spend more on gifts for their pets than for family and friends. A survey by Petco finds that the close relationship that many people developed with their pets during the pandemic is continuing even as society opens up once more. A guide for pet owners celebrating the holidays with their pets includes advice on decorating rooms, taking family photographs, serving a healthy meal, buying gifts, and creating an adventure
Pets rule. Especially at holiday time.
So much so that most American pet owners say they are more excited to spend the holidays with their four-legged friends than with their own family members.Read More »
In a new survey by pet health and wellness company Petco eight out of 10 pet owners say the holidays offer an opportunity to spend quality time with their pets—and they want to make the most of it—rather than with family and friends.
Confined to their homes by the pandemic and unable to mix with friends and family as before, many Americans found companionship in a pet. As a result, more than 11 million pets found their way into American homes during that time.
The close relationship that developed continues and now is spreading to the holiday festivities, too.
Among the gifts available for the holidays are matching clothing for pets and their owners, advent calendars, healthy treats, and toys. There are also fashionable beds, collars and leashes.
Help in commemorating the occasion
Here is a guide from Petco for pet owners who want to place the spotlight on their pets in the season’s festivities.
• Make preparations
Anticipating the celebrations can be almost as much fun as enjoying the holidays themselves.
To establish the holiday spirit, pet owners can decorate their rooms with throws and beds. At the same time they can provide them with chews and treats that will calm them should they become anxious and nervous about all the preparations going on around them.
Pet owners also might like to initiate the countdown to the holidays with an advent calendar that dispenses toys or treats for cats, dogs and small pets.
It might also be a good idea to have a routine health check from a veterinarian to ensure that your pets are ready for the holiday excitement that is on the way.
• Take family photographs
A great way to celebrate the season is to have a holiday photograph taken with your pet. You can create a coordinated look with hats that match as well as sweaters designed for pets to complement those worn by their owners.
Among the items in which your pet can pose in your family photograph are: A gingerbread sweater that can be worn by your dog; a one-size-fits-all cape with a Christmas tree decoration that is suitable for a cat to wear; and a Santa costume in which a dog can be dressed.
A special holiday package contains a holiday bandana and a gingerbread spritz to suit the season.
You might want to consider virtual training for your dogs to ensure they are ready for their picture with their owner as well as a grooming package that includes a haircut, a bath, and skin care applications. Nail trimming and teeth brushing are also available so your pets will appear their best at picture time.
• Serve a healthy meal
Although food is a central part of holiday get-togethers, it is important for pet owners to remember that some food items that are commonly consumed by humans can be dangerous to pets. These foods include grapes, turkey skin, bones, raisins, sweets, onions, and spices.
Should a pet consume toxic materials or foods, call your veterinarian or the Pet Poison Helpline.
Special meals for pets can enable them to have a tasty but safe holiday meal. Among them are chicken-flavored dog chews and items from the bakery collection for dogs, and freeze-dried treats for cats.
• Treat your pets with gifts
A large selection of gifts for pets and their owners is available. Among them are stocking suffers as well as stockings themselves. An owner might find a suitable choice for the pet that has everything among a wide variety of clothes, toys, and even gift sets.
• Create an adventure
Keep you pets warm and cozy during the winter months with gear such as a beanie or lightweight puffer jacket. They are great when walking, going on outings, or traveling.
Pet owners also can assist their four-legged friends when traveling with a backpack carrier or a pet sling.
Fancy printed dog collars and matching leashes also can turn a routine walk into an adventure.