Animal-Friendly Holiday Tips From PETA

For Immediate Release:
December 12, 2019

Nicole Meyer 202-483-7382

Norfolk, Va. – Following reports that a deer’s antlers became badly entangled in Christmas lights earlier this month in California, PETA is releasing a list of animal-friendly holiday decorating tips, available in full here. Following these tips could ensure safer, happier celebrations for everyone—and even save an animal’s life.

PETA’s tips include:

  • Christmas: Avoid using tinsel and ornaments that are breakable or shiny—instead, opt for ones that are made of wool-free felt, paper, or wood—and use wool-free stockings and tree skirts. Refrain from draping strings of lights over bushes or shrubs, as it can be dangerous to wildlife. Consider decorating outdoor trees with edible treats that squirrels and birds can enjoy, such as pinecone feeders or birdseed ornaments.
  • Hanukkah: Use vegan candles made from vegetable wax or flameless LED candles for the menorah.
  • Kwanzaa: Use vegan candles, a mkeka mat made from straw or paper, and a wooden kinara.

It’s also important to note that mistletoe, holly, poinsettias, amaryllis, daffodils, and lilies can be harmful and even deadly to cats. Choose artificial versions or opt for a Christmas cactus, red roses, white orchids, or achiras instead.

“The smallest, simplest changes can often mean the difference between a celebration that’s kind to all and one that puts wildlife and companion animals at risk,” says PETA Senior Vice President Lisa Lange. “PETA is wishing everyone the happiest of holidays—and reminding people to spare a thought for the vulnerable among us.”

PETA’s motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way,” and we oppose speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind