Everyone feels the tension rise during the holidays. Not just people, but pets too!
Perhaps you are trying to figure out how you are going to host all your family or friends, making sure all the food is prepared in time for dinner, or maybe you need to figure out when you need to leave to arrive at the host’s house on time.
If you’re going to be a guest, you have to figure out who is going to watch your pet. If you’re hosting, you have to figure out how you’re going to keep your pet from going berserk on all your guests.
Dogs express their anxiety by chewing, barking, panting, and pacing, while cats tend to scratch, hide, and mark their territory with their urine.
There are a few things in your power to be able to keep everyone, both people and pets, happy during the holiday season.
Keep to the Routine
The best thing you can do is keep to your daily routine of feeding, walking, and resting. A routine change will stress your dog out, so keep everything the same as much as possible.
If it means you have to cut out on some family time to take your dog out, do so because your dog is your family too!
If your pooch is a cuddler, give them some extra scratches behind the ears to reassure them of how much you love them!
Set Up a Safe Space for Your Pet
Your dog most likely has a favorite couch or chair they like to hang out and nap in.
If you don’t let your dog on the furniture, they most likely have a spot on the floor they like or a comfort corner.
Make your pet’s safe spot extra special for them when it’s time to host for the holidays. One thing you can do is make sure guests are aware of your pet’s safe spot.
If you have any small children coming to your apartment, let them know that when your dog is in their spot, they are not to be petted.
That is where they go to rest and escape from the commotion of the party. If you have an extra room, you can set up a safe spot in there so your dog can have the sweet serenity of a space all to themselves to sleep and pass the time while you party with family and friends.
Schedule Additional Time for Morning and Evening Quality Time
Most dogs will get excited or even anxious with all the new people not normally in the house.
One of the best things you can do is take them on an extra-long walk or extended playtime in the morning on the day of hosting.
When your dog is worn out, they are less likely to get nervous and bark, chew, pant, or pace, as they will simply be too tired to do so.
Instead, they’ll sniff to get familiar with the new people, and then happily wander off to relax away from the crowd.
This is why it’s important to have tip number two ready, so after the tiring walk, your dog will come home and go street to sleep in a safe spot.