Christmas Safety Tips
Christmas can be the most wonderful time of the year but with a lot of forbidden food and decorations within reach, it can be a very busy time for veterinary practices around the country!
Here are our top tips to help ensure your dog enjoys a happy and healthy Christmas:
When wrapping presents, it’s probably best if your dog is in another room enjoying a tasty, long-lasting treat. Wrapping paper and string are very easy to get hold of and can cause severe intestinal issues if swallowed. Also, nobody wants dog hair stuck to the tape on their Christmas presents!
Try not to use glass decorations when decorating your tree and keep tinsel up high and away from your dog. Make sure to clean up tree needles to protect those paws and ensure your dog doesn’t chew holly, mistletoe & yew as they are toxic.
If you are having guests over, try and stick to your normal daily routine and ensure your dog is walked and fed at the usual time. Chances are he will be nice and relaxed when people arrive and might even enjoy a little snooze.
If your dog gets giddy or excitable when friends and family visit, help calm him by distracting him with a long-lasting tasty treat, such as a frozen Kong or K9 Connectables. If children are visiting and your dog is not used to little people or they are not used to dogs, have a chat with the family beforehand to make sure the children understand not to approach your dog if he is eating or sleeping.
It may also be an idea to create a nice quiet and comfortable area with fresh water that only the dog is allowed to go to; so he can remove himself to if he’s finding the experience too stressful. He will no doubt let you know when he’s ready to re-join the action!
Most of us like to indulge over Christmas and of course, so do our dogs but you need to make sure they stick to dog-friendly treats and don’t over-indulge.
Chocolate, grapes, raisins, macadamia nuts and alcohol are toxic to dogs and rich fatty foods can cause serious damage. Although it might be tempting to give your dog bones from the Christmas meat, they are likely to splinter and cause internal damage.
Remember to add your local veterinary practice’s out of hours’ number to your phone, just in case you do have a veterinary emergency outside of their opening hours.
Most importantly – don’t forget to spend quality time with your dog during the busy festive period and of course to have lots of fun together!
Merry Christmas from all the team at Dogs Trust!