Christmas Dog Safety - Tips for Owners

Christmas Dog Safety - Tips for Owners

With Christmas just around the corner, it's important for dog owners to recognise what can be dangerous or toxic to dogs this festive season.

Christmas will be here before we know it; with decorations and trees going up a little earlier this year the run-up has been longer but, somehow feels shorter? It's a time of twinkling lights, irresistible food smells, hanging chocolate, tinsel, baubles and music. Though these are all fun and festive parts of Christmas its important for dog owners to know how to keep our perfect pooches safe this Christmas. From chewing tinsel to sneaking morsels, we here at Relax My Dog have some helpful tips on keeping your pooch safe this festive season!

  • Christmas Ornaments - What's Christmas without a Christmas tree? And what's a Christmas tree without baubles and ornaments? Unfortunately Christmas tree ornaments have the potential to be dangerous to your dog; they could stand on them, shattering them, which can result in a serious cut. They could be chewed or swallowed which could spell disaster or an expensive vets trip. Make sure you pick up any fallen ornaments and get rid of any that are already broken. Even better, decorate your tree with our doggy in mind; any breakable, chewable or edible (including candy) baubles should only be hung on the top parts of your tree, out of your dogs reach.

  • Tinsel & Lights - Tinsel is another tempting one for the Christmas tree, but can be dangerous if your dog decides to chew or swallow it. It being a string object, if your dog ingests it, there is the danger that it'll choke them or cause an internal blockage. Best to be safe, keep tinsel away from your dog, high up on the tree or omitted completely. This also goes for string lights, same dangers plus electricity! Make sure all lose cables are tidied away and inaccessible to your dog.

  • Chocolate - It's dog owner 101; chocolate is toxic to dogs and can cause serious problems. Even small amounts can cause vomiting, diarrhea, seizures and even death in some cases. Avoid putting chocolates on the tree at all if you have a dog, especially a larger dog breed, as the temptation might just be too great for them to snaffle a snack! With that in mind too, be careful with your own chocolate treats; don't leave them out unattended and clear up any spills or crumbs you might drop. You don't want your dog accidently licking our cleaning up something that can be so dangerous to them.

  • Christmas Pudding & Mince Pies- Another staple of the festive period, mince pies and warm Christmas pudding! Unfortunately things like raisins, currants, sultanas and other dried fruit products are toxic to your dog. Even eating just a small amount can cause kidney failure - as tempting as it might be to give into those big, begging eyes, it's just not worth the risk. As before, make sure these treats are not left unattended and all crumbs and spills are cleaned up before your dog can help "clean up"!

  • Alcohol - Having a tipple, snifter or "wee dram" of something over Christmas is also very common and can add to the Christmas cheer! But be careful with leaving drinks out around your dog this festive time; alcohol affects dogs as it does humans; they can become wobbly, drowsy and, if consumed in excess,  can cause coma and death. Just make sure drinks ae left our of reach of curious dogs!

  • Christmas Plants - Sometimes loved ones will gift lovely Christmas plants, including holly, mistletoe, poinsettia and ivy. These plants are lovely and often part of wreath arrangements, and while they aren't highly toxic to your dog (except the American species of mistletoe), if ingested or chewed on can cause mouth irritation and stomach upset. Just to be safe, make sure these thigs are out of doggy chewing reach or, if you prefer, get fake versions of these plants.

  • Christmas tree - Fallen pine needles can cause injury's to your dogs paw pads and if ingested can cause mild stomach upset. If you have a real tree standing in water, make sure this part is completely covered. Pine sap mixing with the water can makes it poisonous to drink. The best way to make sure your dog doesn't come into contact with these things is to have the tree high up on a table, away from them, or have a dog/child gate surrounding it. This also stops them getting to unopened gifts!

So there are some Christmas safety tips to help keep your furry friend healthy and happy this Christmas! There is so much to enjoy over the festive period, it's much better knowing all of your loved ones are going to be safe and can enjoy themselves!

Please do bear in mind that everything in this post is strictly advisory and has been gathered from various reputable sources from the internet. We’re not vets, and you should always seek professional advice if you ever have concerns.

Thanks for reading. If you have anything that you would like us to cover, then feel free to get in touch with us over on our Facebook, Twitter or Instagram!
Dec 10 2020
by Claire