We love Christmas! Here are a few tips to help make sure your dog enjoys it too....
1. Christmas food
Festive food is delicious to us but to our pets some can be dangerous. The list is long, but it’s worth remembering what not to feed your dog, as an emergency trip to the vets will be the last thing you’ll want for you and your best friend!
Chocolate, mince pies, Christmas pudding, raisins, grapes, Macadamia nuts, onion, garlic, blue cheese, artificial sweeteners, mouldy foods and alcohol. And be extra careful with bones from turkey carcasses as they can pose a dangerous choking hazard.
Don’t worry, it’s not all bad! You can still share some skinless and boneless turkey! Just be careful it's not covered in fat, salt or gravy as this can cause tummy upsets or pancreatitis flares.
2. Christmas tree and decorations
It's best to only allow pets around your tree when they can be supervised. Flashing lights, glittering tinsel and hanging decorations are too tempting for even the most well behaved dog. Fallen trees are a fire hazard and ingested tinsel can cause obstruction requiring surgery. Festive plants and flowers including poinsettias, holly, ivy and mistletoe are mildly toxic to dogs, with Lilies being potentially fatal to cats.
3. Christmas chaos
Christmas can be chaotic. To reduce stress, try keeping to your dog’s normal routine, as much as possible. Provide them with somewhere cosy and quiet where they can retreat to and have their own space away from the festive excitement. When your pet is in their quiet spot, make sure they are left alone and not disturbed by children or other guests.
4. Winter chills and spills
You may not feel like going for a walk in winter, but the exercise will keep your pet happy and healthy. You and your dog should wear reflective clothing to ensure you're both visible. If snow is on the cards, their paws will need some extra protection. Consider applying a paw balm to protect their pads and carefully clip long fur around their toes. This will help reduce the amount of fur snow and ice that will collect between their feet. Be aware that salt and antifreeze is dangerous to our pet friends, so immediately after a walk, wash your dog’s paws with warm water to prevent burns or ingestion of any chemicals if they are lickers.
5. Snow balls
Dogrobes are a great way to keep your dog warm after a walk and will even help melt snow balls that have gathered on furry bellies! This will help dry them quicker and will keep your car, carpet and furniture protected!