How to Find a Good Pet Sitter for the Holidays

Hiring a pet sitter is a great way to keep your pets comfortable at home without causing anymore upset to their holiday season. Holiday plans often have us traveling far from home. Although we’d love to have our pets with us on all these trips, it is, unfortunately, not always possible. 

Pets are definitely more comfortable in spaces they know. Keeping them at home can help them stay calm as you travel. Use this guide to find the right pet sitter for your holiday travel needs:

Pet sitter is holding a dog on sofa.

Creating New Traditions: 8 Fun Ways to Celebrate the Holidays with Pets

Holidays full of food and gifts, love and heartwarming memories of time spent together are cherished traditions for most every family. It is natural that we want to celebrate the holidays with pets as well since they play an important role in our family. Think about ways to include them in your holiday traditions and maybe even create new ones with your pets in mind.

Your team at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services wants to share our ideas for ways to celebrate the holidays with pets, keeping safety in mind. 


Meowy Christmas: Holiday Gifts for Cats and Cat Lovers

There are so many holiday gifts for cats and cat lovers. Humans have adored cats for millennia in Egypt and palaces in the Far East. It’s no wonder that we want to lavish our kitties this holiday season. With the endless array of gift options out there, how can you narrow it down?  

Your friends at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services are here to give you 7 suggestions for the best holiday gifts for cats and cat lovers. Let’s take a closer look!


Giving You and Your Pet a Stress-Free Holiday

A holiday centric photo of a yellow colored dog wearing novelty reindeer antlers and panting.

Can you feel it? The frazzle with the dazzle that comes this time of year. Chances are, if you are feeling a little overwhelmed by the holidays, your pet may be feeling it too. Stress during the holidays is common, and you may have found ways to cope with it, like meditation and yoga. But what about your pet? 

Oakland Veterinary Referral Services aims to give you our suggestions for keeping the chaos from causing issues with your pet. Here are some of our favorites for giving your pet a stress-free holiday.


Keep the Cheer Without the Fear: Avoiding Pet Emergencies this Holiday

pet emergenciesThe holidays are a time of joy and merriment, where loved ones gather to exchange gifts and make memories. There’s food, family, decorations, and stress. No wonder the holiday season sees a spike in the number of pet emergencies we see.

During the midst of the celebrations and festivities, your curious pet may be up to, or more appropriately, in to something they shouldn’t. Let’s look at how you can avoid a pet emergency this holiday and keep the happy in Happy Holidays.


Turkey Troubles: Pet Pancreatitis and the Holiday Season

pet pancreatitisThanksgiving is just around the corner, and most of us are anxiously awaiting all of the delicious foods. The turkey and gravy, the stuffing, the fluffy rolls fresh from the oven, and – oh boy – the pumpkin pie! Thanksgiving is truly a time for giving thanks for all of our bounties, including the delectable dishes.

Unfortunately, the holiday season is also rife with pet emergency cases relating to pancreatitis and other gastrointestinal problems. Your friends at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services want to explain why pet pancreatitis is a serious emergency that should give you pause before letting Fido partake in the holiday feast.


Go Ga-Ga For These Holiday Gifts For Pets (And Their Owners!)

When it comes to gift giving, pets rank right up there with the rest of our loved ones as recipients of our goodwill. Shopping for pet lovers can also be fun, but choosing a gift for them, or for our pets, isn’t always simple and the options are nearly endless.

We love animal-related gifts here at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services, and we hope our list of holiday gifts for pets and pet lovers alike will aid you on your shopping adventures this season!


Lights, Camera, Action! The Best Holiday Films Featuring Animals

No one (except maybe Ebenezer Scrooge) could argue with the magical splendor, festive revelry, and spirited generosity that seem to be everywhere this time of year. While it’s simply wonderful to participate in the endless social events and family gatherings, sometimes you just need a night in. If curling up under a chenille throw with your best furry friend doesn’t sound reasonable enough, perhaps our list of holiday films featuring animals will entice you. Go on, get comfy!

Beyond the Standards

Holiday movies have that charming je ne sais quoi that other films just don’t have. Of course, old standards like Elf, Home Alone, and A Christmas Story have their place among all classics. However, our favorite holiday films featuring animals not only elevate the experience of pet ownership but also highlight the power of the human-animal bond. Continue…

December Holiday Decoration DON’Ts – What Every Pet Parent Should Know

iStock_000007953420_LargeSo, now that Halloween has come and gone and the turkey and gravy have been feasted upon, it’s time to break out those boxes in the garage and decorate! It is a common scene after Thanksgiving: the stringing of lights and the decking of halls… But, like other holidays, if you share your home with a cherished pet, you’d better keep a keen eye on your fur buddy around the bedazzling display of holiday décor.

On the Tree

The ideal way to protect your pet from the perils of the Christmas tree is to simply keep your four-legged friend away from the tree unless you or a family member are present. If that’s impossible, keep lower branches somewhat bare or opt for unbreakable, large ornaments at your pet’s level.

No one likes to deal with a downed tree after a rowdy game of chase (we suggest anchoring it), or a favorite ornament lying broken on the floor (a tempting toy for your feline), there are a few decorations that can create real emergencies for our pets. Continue…

Xylitol: A Hidden Holiday Danger for Pets

Can you spot the Xylitol in this photo?
…Neither can your pet.

What do the fruitcake you made for your diabetic great-aunt Betty, the pack of gum in your stocking, and the plate of holiday cookies that your neighbor dropped off have in common? All of them may contain the artificial sweetener Xylitol, a dangerous and deadly substance for dogs. Xylitol is becoming more and more commonly utilized, which makes it important for pet owners to be on the defense.

What is Xylitol?

Xylitol is a sugar substitute that is found in items such as sugar-free gum, baked goods, and oral hygiene products. In people it is absorbed very slowly so there are no ill effects. In dogs, however, the substance is absorbed within 30 minutes, causing the body to release a large rush of insulin. This results in a life-threatening drop in blood sugar. Besides this, Xylitol can also have severe effects on the liver. Continue…