It's the holiday season — a time for giving, making things merry and bright, and celebrating with your loved ones, including your pets. After all, your furry friends are a big part of the family and deserve a few of their own festive traditions.
Whether it's enjoying a pet-tacular Christmas movie with Fido, decking the halls with catnip-infused ornaments, or creating something tasty in the kitchen, there's something for every pet personality. So, how will you make merry with your pet this holiday season?
Tasty Holiday Pet Treats
Nothing says "I love you" like a homemade tasty treat — especially when it comes to your fur-family. Try one of these pet-approved holiday treats to help your pal enjoy some of the holiday feasting.
(adapted from Doggy Dessert Chef)
- One cup of fresh cranberries
- One cup of applesauce
- Two cups of whole wheat flour
- One teaspoon of ground cinnamon (optional if you think it will irritate your pup)
- ¼ cup of milk
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Puree the cranberries and mix them with the apple sauce. Add milk, cinnamon, and flour and mix into a dough. Knead the dough and roll out on a heavily floured surface to about ¼” thick. Use a fun holiday cookie cutter to cut out shapes and place the cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for about 10 to 15 minutes, then cool and refrigerate.
For even more baking fun, try the Dash Dog Treat Maker to create some quick and easy bone-shaped goodies.
(adapted from Mess for Less)
- Five ounces of tuna in oil, drained
- One egg
- ½ cup flour
- ¼ cup wheat germ
- ½ cup cornmeal
- ¼ cup wheat flour
- ¼ cup water
- ½ tablespoon dried catnip
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix all of the ingredients in a large bowl, then form into a dough. Working on a floured surface, shape small parts of the dough into balls. Then, press down on each ball to create a round cookie about the size of a nickel. Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheet and bake for about 20 minutes. Let the cookies cool completely and serve to your happy cat.
Pet-Inspired Holiday Decorations
The holidays are full of all sorts of ways to add cheer and festive flair to your home. Let your pets get in on the decorating action with these bright, creative ideas.
- Get a felt stocking and some non-toxic fabric paint and help your pal add a pawprint to personalize their stocking. Keep some wipes on hand for clean-up!
- If you're especially daring, let your pet walk through some festive paint colors and walk across a fabric table runner. Again, ensure you use non-toxic fabric paint and protect the surrounding area.
- For a neater pet craft, incorporate a picture of your best buddy onto their stocking. Or, get an ornament in their likeness and personalize it with their name.
- Fill a few felt holiday-shaped cutouts with some catnip and hang from your feline friend’s scratching post.
Holiday Activities To Enjoy With Your Pets
Who says your pets can't celebrate the season too? There are all sorts of fun ways you can incorporate your pal into your holiday activities.
Include your pets in your holiday pictures and cards by finding a pet-friendly photographer. Using a professional that's used to working with animals can make a huge difference.
Plus, it's a good idea to have a play session or a walk with your pet to help them use up some energy before the photoshoot. They'll be better able to focus, and you should also have some of their favorite treats on hand to keep them engaged and cooperative.
Check Out Holiday Displays Together
Find an outdoor holiday light display that welcomes pets on a leash and go for a stroll. Or, you can even explore the decorations in your neighborhood with an after-sunset walk. If you have a cat, no problem, consider training your cat to walk on a leash so they can join you too.
Watch A Pet-Friendly Holiday Movie
When the temperature outside starts to drop, there's nothing like curling up on the couch with some hot cocoa and a good flick. Let your pet snuggle up with you, and check out one of these holiday movies that feature a lovable dog or cat.
The Nine Lives of Christmas — All it takes is an absolutely adorable cat for a confirmed bachelor to finally meet the love of his life.
The Search for Santa Paws — Santa is in trouble after losing his memory in New York City, and Santa Paws goes missing. But it's okay; a team of magical elves and perky pups are ready to save the day and Christmas.
Looking for a few more ideas for holiday favorites with pets that steal the show? Check out — How the Grinch Stole Christmas, A Charlie Brown Christmas, and Santa Claws.
The Perfect Presents For Your Pets
Are you not sure what to put under the tree for your finicky feline or playful pup? Here are a few inspired ideas to get your gift-giving juices flowing. In fact, if your pet enjoys a visit to the store, bring them along to a pet-friendly store to join in the shopping fun.
- Neat-Lik Treat Mat — Cats and dogs will love licking their favorite spreadable treats. Plus, the licking will help keep your pal calm and happy.
- Neater Feeder — Are you tired of your cute but messy pet leaving more food and water on the floor than in their stomach? Wrap up a Neater Feeder under the tree, and your pet can enjoy a more comfortable, cleaner meal.
- Interactive toys — Pets love puzzle toys, motorized mice, and toys that make sound, crinkle, and shake. So, make sure to put a few under the tree, like the Rolly Cannoli.
- Snuggly toys — Of course, your furry friend would also love a cuddle buddy. Soft, plush toys are great options for holiday gifts for your pet.
- A cozy sweater — Make sure your pet stays warm and toasty this holiday with a comfy holiday sweater or vest.
- Dog booties — If you live in an area with lots of frigid temps and ice and snow. Your dog might appreciate some booties. The dog boots not only keep your pal's paws warm, but they protect them from the elements and various chemicals you find in deicers.
Keep Your Pets Safe During The Holidays
Of course, with all the holiday fun comes a lot of ways your pet can get into trouble. Therefore, make sure to keep the holidays safe for your dogs and cats with these helpful tips:
- Keep decorations pet-friendly and secure. Opt for an artificial tree and make sure it can't tip over.
- Use LED candles instead of a real flame.
- Keep a list handy of holiday foods that are toxic to pets, and keep the Animal Poison Control Center information in a convenient place.
- Make sure holiday guests know you have pets.
- If your pets are around while you're unwrapping gifts, make sure they don’t get a hold of the paper and trim.
- Check out our complete article about helpful holiday safety tips for pets.
Are you in the holiday spirit yet? Check out our blog for other inspired ideas of how to spend time with your furry friends. Plus, you’ll find valuable tips on how to keep your pet happy, healthy, and safe all year long.