Valentine’s Day is celebrated every February 14th in many different places around the world. There are many clichés around this romantic day and for couples in love, it can be a wonderful day to celebrate their relationship. While this day centers the love between people, it’s also possible to include your pet(s) in some celebrations and it’s always important to keep them safe from presents!

During other holidays, I’ve written about the foods and treats that pets should avoid! Valentine’s Day is no exception, especially with the tradition of giving loved ones candy as presents. Remember to keep any candy or left-over food away from where pets can reach, as many animals love to try people food if possible! Fatty and/or rich food can be really bad for pets, as they’re not able to digest many of the same foods we are. Plus, chocolate and all the added sugar in candy can be fatal for many animals.

There are even some flowers that be damaging to animals if ingested. Lilies are particularly dangerous for cats if they consume the petals, leaves, pollen, or even the water in the vase. These beautiful flowers are often a wonderful part of any bouquet but if you have a cat that tends to nibble on things, it might be best to keep lilies out of the house! Ingesting lilies can cause kidney failure in cats and if left undertreated, it could be fatal. Symptoms usually include increased thirst and urination, vomiting, lethargy, tremors or seizures, and a loss of appetite. Quick treatment is imperative for your pet to make a recovery! And the other piece of good news is that lilies aren’t dangerous for dogs if they nibble on it.

If you want an extensive list of whether a plant is toxic or non-toxic to dogs, cats, or horses, check out this resource from the ASCPA: Toxic and Non-Toxic Plants List. And make sure to call your vet, local animal emergency hospital, or the ASPCA Poison Control Center (at (888)426-4435) if your pet eats something they shouldn’t!

The good news is that there are many ways to include your pet in many Valentine’s Day celebrations. Going to a park or beach with your pet and loved one can always be fun! And there are several bars and bakeries in the Pacific Northwest that cater to dogs and their owners. Paws for a Beer in Bellingham and Dogwood Play Park in Seattle are just two such bars in Washington state! Even more, there are several bakeries/pet stores that cater to our four-legged friends:

Many of the above places (and the many others I didn’t include!) aren’t exactly like human bakeries and also sell food, toys, and other pet related items. There are even a few that also have self-washing tubs if your pup has too much fun and gets a bit dirty! Check out the respective website to see what services the company offers but even a visit to the pet store for a treat or a new toy can be fun for many pups!

The above suggestions do focus on dogs but there are ways to show cats we love them as well! These aloof animals also have a whole lot of love to share and each cat is going to love something different. Some might appreciate a little catnip or a new toy! Others will enjoy play with one of their old toys for a bit. Many might also love just to snuggle with you for a bit.

For many folks, today is a day of love and there are a few ways to include your pet in some of the festivities. However you’re spending or celebrating today, I hope everyone has a great day with the people and animals they love!

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