Decorating your home for the holidays? Don’t forget about your pets. No, we’re not suggesting you wrap your actual animals in Christmas lights and tinsel (safety hazard alert!). Instead, include your pet in the festivities by finding creative ways to add holiday cheer to the places where they spend the most time. From dog beds and cat scratching posts to horse stalls, goat barns and beyond, there are so many ways to turn your pet’s favorite spaces into a winter wonderland.
But before we dive in, a note on safety: Many traditional holiday decorations can be hazardous to pets. Tinsel, for example, can be a choking hazard or cause serious intestinal issues if your pet chews or swallows it. Items such as string lights and breakable ornaments have similar risks. Here’s a good rule to follow: If a piece of décor wasn’t designed with your pet in mind, keep it well out of their reach.
Read on for merry and bright suggestions for just about every type of pet.
Dashing Dog Décor
Dogs are the MVPs of holiday decorating for two reasons:
First, they come with a lot of gear—and almost all of it can be customized for maximum merry vibes. Does your dog love lounging in bed? Upgrade them with a holiday-patterned bed, like Disney's Mickey Mouse Holiday Pet Bed. It's part of a gift set that includes a bone-shaped plush pillow and a throw blanket, so your dog's decor will be just as pulled together as your own.
The other reason holiday decorating for dogs is so fun? Many pups don’t mind getting “decorated” themselves! Swapping in a seasonal collar or bandana is an easy way to up the holiday spirit in your home. You’ll get the warm, festive fuzzies every time they wander over for a snuggle.
Cat-Friendly Christmas Upgrades
There’s no better way to spend a winter evening than with a cup of hot cocoa in one hand and a cat purring on your lap. But that’s just the beginning of the comfort and joy your cat can add to your home during the holidays (with your help, of course).
Did you know that a cat's scratcher can double as seasonal décor? The Frisco Holiday Tree House & Scratching Post’s mini tree-shaped design can fit in seamlessly with your other Christmas decorations. And how could you resist that star-topped cat house?
Santa-Approved Small Pet Décor
Good news for parents of ferrets, guinea pigs and other critters: Your pet may be small, but you can go big when it comes to decorating their space. For a forest green-hued hanging tunnel, opt for the Frisco Forest Plush Small Pet Hanging Tunnel. String this toy up in their enclosure to give your small pet a cozy place to hang out—and give yourself a chance to imagine them as a mini St. Nick.
While you’re at it, sprinkle some seasonal bedding around their enclosure, too. Brown's Natural Aromatic Red Cedar Pet Bedding & Litter comes in a red color, making it the perfect pairing for the green hanging tunnel.
And hey, if you’re going all out, why not dress up your pet? Guinea pigs can go into full Kris Kringle mode in a Frisco Santa Claus costume. With a costume that cute, they’ll be picture perfect (so don’t forget to take some holiday pet photos).
For Festive Feathered Friends
Jingle bells, silver bells, carol of the bells: It just isn’t the holidays without the sound of a bell ringing somewhere. And that’s perfect for birds, who typically love to play with toys that have bells included.
The Super Bird Creations Daisy Ring is a perfect seasonal upgrade for your feathered friend, with vine balls arranged in a wreath and a festive, silver bell hanging in its center. Your bird can perch and peck away at this toy to their heart’s content—and you’ll feel the stirring of the holiday spirit every time you hear that telltale jingle.
Remember that birds are curious creatures who love to peck at anything within reach. So for safety's sake, avoid hanging any decorations from their enclosure unless they're designed especially for birds.
Deck Your Horse’s Stalls
Adding a little ho-ho-ho to your horse’s stall is a no-brainer. Think of the door to the stall as a blank canvas—one you can decorate in any way you choose. Tried and true “deck the stalls” tactics include:
- Stringing evergreen garland above the entrance to their stall
- Hanging a festive wreath
- Text-based décor like strings of letters spelling a festive phrase like “fa-la-la-la-la” or a sign saying “Santa Stop Here.”
- Wrapping the door to their stall in holiday wrapping paper
Good Tidings for Goats
If you have goats, you know that adding decorations to their space can be a challenge—they’re likely to chew on just about anything! But that just means you’ll have to keep the sparkle and shine out of their reach.
Try these suggestions to make your goats’ spirits bright (and yours too):
- String garland along the edge of the roof
- Hang a holiday wreath high and/or festive bows high up on the wall (so your goats can’t reach them)
- If your goats wear clothes in winter, opt for seasonal colors like red and green, like this Sullivan Supply goat tube in burgundy.
Festive Fish and Lizard Tanks
Don’t forget your scaly friends this season. Using holiday tank ornaments, you can create a winter wonderland right in your fish tank or lizard enclosure—one that’s sure to delight both your pets and any holiday visitors who notice them interacting with a miniature Santa and elves.
The five mini-statues in the Penn-Plax Holiday Variety Pack include a surfing elf, Santa relaxing in an innertube, and a speedboat carrying a Christmas tree—the perfect mix of watery and wintertime vibes.
The kids in your life are likely to appreciate a visit from Penn-Plax’s “Frozen” princess Anna in your pet’s tank, too. All of these options are made of 100 percent resin, making them safe for fish and lizards alike.
More Ways to Celebrate the Holidays: