With the holidays coming we all will be having guests over, and be doing things out of our ordinary routine. Our pets are going to notice this, and may become stressed or act out. Pets act out to tell us something is wrong. They are not able to ask for change directly. Due to the stressful nature of the holidays, we need to take steps to ensure our pets health, and safety.
Even if our pets are used to the guests we are having over, we need to realize that our pets may be stressed from other actions going in. Make sure your pets have a refuge to get away from it all. A crate in your bedroom may be ideal. If your pets are interested, make them part of everything. Introduce all your guests to your pets, and let them become familiar with each other in a controlled environment. If at any time your pets lash out or display other signs of stress, place them in a quiet, dark area to calm down. Remind your guests that your pets are having an issue, and to let them be if they are getting upset.
Family and friends may be bringing over gifts this holiday season, it is important to remove the possibility of a conflict with your pets, and this new intrusion. Some pets scratch or chew to relieve stress, and may use your gifts as a way to tell you they are having problems. Put gifts in an area your pets do not have access to, and make sure your pets have plenty of toys to occupy their time.
With the holidays comes food, and lots of it. The new smells coming from the kitchen or dining room may be too much for your pets to resist. To make things worse some food, like chocolate, may be bad for your pets. Make sure your pets have their own food, and are satisfied. Block your pets from eating areas, and direct your guests not to give them table scraps.
A guest may have brought their own pets. Your pets may get along with the new animals, but will still see it as an intruder. Make sure your pets are well socialized, and make it clear to your guest their pets must be social too. Only allowing altered animals in your home will help as well. Altered animals are much less likely to have territory issues. It is still possible though. If a fight does break out make sure to separate the animals.
The biggest thing is to make sure your animals are comfortable, and have a way to get away from it all if the commotion becomes too much.