If your pet could talk, they’d probably tell you they deserve a special treat every day, and we  agree! The holiday season is a great time to treat your pet to help them feel they are truly part of the family. Delicious, festive treats are an important part of every holiday celebration, but the treats in which you indulge are often harmful to your furry friend. However, pet-safe treats ensure your pet can join your family while you all enjoy holiday delicacies and cheer. Follow our Haskell Valley Veterinary Clinic team’s recommendations on providing your pet with safe treats—snacks and experiences—this holiday season. 

Treat your pet to a tasty snack

Keep in mind your pet’s preferences and health status when purchasing or making pet-friendly holiday treats. Do some research to ensure a recipe’s ingredients are pet-safe, and consult our Haskell Valley Veterinary Clinic team if you have questions or concerns. Before giving your pet a treat, consider the following:

  • Ingredients — Check pet treat recipe and label ingredients before giving them to your furry pal. Ensure they exclude these harmful ingredients:
    • Chocolate 
    • Xylitol
    • Raisins, grapes, and currants
    • Macadamia nuts
    • Alcohol and caffeine
    • Garlic, onions, and leeks
  • Dietary restrictions — Take into account any dietary restrictions or allergies your pet may have. For example, some pets may have allergies to certain ingredients, such as wheat or dairy, so choose recipes and store-bought treats that cater to their specific needs.
  • Calorie intake — Be mindful of your pet’s daily calorie intake, especially during the holiday season when treats are abundant. High-calorie treats can lead to weight gain, so choose treats that are appropriate for your pet’s size and activity level.
  • Texture preference — A treat’s texture matters. Some pets prefer crunchy treats, while others like chewy or soft ones. 

Treat your pet to a gift

Allowing your pet to partake in edible treats is only one way to help your furry pal feel they are part of holiday festivities. You can also celebrate your pet by presenting them with one or more of these fun and functional pet-safe gifts:

  • An orthopedic bed — If your pet spends much of their day sleeping, their bed’s quality can significantly impact their physical health and mobility. Pet beds made with memory or orthopedic foam provide pets with joint support and relief from age-related discomfort. 
  • A puzzle feeder — The various available puzzle toys require your pet to roll, paw, lick, shake, or nibble the toy to access the tasty treat or food hidden inside. Puzzle feeders help your pet develop their problem-solving skills and keep them entertained.
  • Edible chews — Edible chews are a safe alternative to animal bones. Your pet can safely ingest Nylabones and chews, such as dental treats, that provide health benefits.
  • A winter jacket — Ensure your pet feels cozy and warm on chilly winter days by outfitting them in a sweater or fleece-lined jacket. 

Treat your pet to an adventure

Sure, your pet thrives on a consistent routine, but every once in a while, they enjoy an adventure with their favorite person—you. Exploring a new environment provides your pet with physical exercise as well as mental enrichment. Switch up your routine by walking in a new neighborhood, or head to a new pet-friendly trail. Let your pet sniff, climb, jump, run, and completely explore the new territory. If your pet enjoys the company of other people and pets, invite a friend along, or head to a dog park for some off-leash fun. 

Treat your pet to a new healthy year

Treating your pet to regular preventive care is the most loving gift you can give them. By ensuring your furry pal has an annual wellness visit, they are likely to enjoy many healthy years with you. Schedule your pet’s routine preventive care appointments to help ensure they reap the following lifelong health benefits: 

  • Early disease detection — Diseases are easier to treat and manage when our Haskell Valley Veterinary Clinic team can diagnose them when they are in an early stage. During your pet’s regular wellness screening, our veterinary team can identify disease long before your furry pal shows signs. 
  • Established health baseline — Regular wellness screening tests help us establish your pet’s normal baseline values. We can then compare your pet’s normal baseline values with future test results. Doing so enables our team to identify your pet’s potential health problems before a disease has progressed.
  • Our veterinary team’s time — During a regular wellness screening, you have our veterinary professionals’ full attention, and you can ask questions and share concerns about your pet’s health. 

The ultimate treat for your pet is spending time with you. So, set aside time to spend with your pet no matter how hectic the holiday season gets. Remember to schedule your pet’s annual wellness exam with our Haskell Valley Veterinary Clinic team to ensure your pet is healthy and happy for the holidays.