How to keep the dog safe and sane at Christmas

How to keep the dog safe and sane at Christmas

Christmas is a crazy change of routine – all packed into a few days! There might be more people and dogs in the house; humans sleeping in strange places; food and decorations everywhere and furniture not normally where it is. It’s wonderful - and maybe a little stressful – for us, but confusing and unsettling for dogs. Our guide will help you prepare for a Christmas which will keep your dog safe and sane!

Decorations - safety tips

If your dog can’t resist getting involved and loves to pick things up in their mouth, then keep the dog out of the way when you are decorating. Even when the tree is up, there are some dogs that cannot resist pulling off decorations or chomping on wires. Either be in the room with them or shut them out! It’s best to avoid chocolate decorations on the tree because it contains a substance called theobromine, which is toxic for dogs. Wreaths and other festive foliage can also be dangerous for dogs. Poinsettia, mistletoe, holly and ivy can all be poisonous, so have them high up and watch your dog around them until you are sure they are out of reach.

Loud noises - how to deal with them

Crackers, popping streamers and fireworks will frighten some
dogs, but not all. If your dog is timid and scared of loud bangs either avoid crackers etc or make a safe place for your dog in another room, with the TV on. You can try to acclimatise young dogs to loud bangs, but this takes time and won’t be achieved in five minutes! A Ruff
and Tumble Drying Coat
 can be used to help keep timid dogs calm. Because the dog robe is warm and cosy, it is comforting. Although the dog coat’s primary use is to dry wet dogs quickly, it has a swaddling effect on dogs which calms then too.

Christmas Food - what dogs should avoid

We’ve already mentioned chocolate, but there are other items to watch out for. The real danger is that at Christmas food is lying around much more than normal and if you turn your back for a second something could be snaffled. It is important to contact a vet if you believe that your dog has eaten something they shouldn’t have, as symptoms may be slow at the start but in some cases can build if untreated and be fatal. Gravy and stuffing often contain garlic and onion which can cause lethargy, sickness and worse.
Currants, raisins, sultanas, and grapes can cause sickness and diarrhoea in some dogs so are best avoided. Cooked turkey bones are liable to splinter so don’t be tempted to share those. Nuts are a tradition at Christmas, and more are around than normal. The dangerous ones to avoid buying if you have a dog in
the house are Macadamia nuts and Walnuts – both contain toxic chemicals which can cause tremors, paralysis, and seizures.

How to keep yourself sane too!

If you have lots of doggy pals stopping by over the festive
period, consider popping a pile of Mitts for wet and dirty paws by the back door. Drying Mitts keep mud at bay and will help keep your house in tip top shape over Christmas, minimising mess for you to clear up! If you have a no sofa rule but you have guests who don’t seem to notice or respect that, a Ruff and Tumble Sofa Throw will protect your sofa and look smart too. Made of double layered towelling, it’s easy to remove and wash once everyone has gone home!