Holiday Safety Tips
- Many holiday foods are harmful or even toxic to our pet dogs. Particularly dangerous are cooked poultry bones; chocolate and other sweets; and bread dough. Click here for a complete list of foods to avoid feeding your dog at any time of year.
- Remind holiday guests to refrain from feeding your dog table scraps. Instead, bring out the doggie treat jar so guests can indulge your pet safely.
- Since many holiday plants are poisonous – think poinsettias, holly and mistletoe – place them out of your dog’s reach, and quickly pick up any dropped leaves or berries.
- Never leave a lighted candle unattended. A dog’s swinging tail can too easily knock it over.
- Hang tree ornaments strategically: non-breakable ones near the bottom, and those shaped like tempting toys (e.g., balls) toward the top.
- Avoid using tinsel on your tree. If ingested, it can twist in your dog’s intestines and be deadly.
- Anchor the tree securely to the ceiling or a wall so it won’t tip over.
- Don’t let your dog drink the Christmas tree water. Water treated with preservative chemicals can trigger severe indigestion in dogs. Untreated water, on the other hand, can become stagnant with bacteria, and thus cause nausea or diarrhea to a dog that drinks it.
The arrival of visitors to your home is very exciting for most dogs. Here a few things you can try for when you are expecting guests:
- Tire your dog with a brisk 20-minute walk before guests’ arrival time.
- Keep your dog leashed when inside the house so you can better control his actions.
- Use a gate or barrier to confine him to an adjoining room.
- If your dog is simply too difficult (or dangerous) to control with guests, it may be best to remove him from the scene altogether. Place him in his crate in a quiet room and provide a chew toy to keep him occupied.
- Even if your dog is a social butterfly, consider giving him some quiet time during festivities. A good time might be just before sitting down to your holiday meal; this way, you can focus on your guests without worrying if the dog is begging from under the table. Allow your dog to rejoin the festivities later.
The very best way to control your dog both at the front door and with any visitors is to teach your dog to sit and stay on command. The goal of this exercise is that, at the sound of the doorbell, you direct your dog to sit in his designated place near the door, where he will stay until you release him. For more information, contact The Dog Training Mobile today!
Don’t give a dog as a surprise gift!
While presenting a wriggly puppy on Christmas morning may make for a cute video, remember that many such “holiday presents” wind up at animal shelters just a few months later. Owning a dog takes a genuine commitment of time, responsibility, and expense. If someone you know seriously wants a dog, consider giving a certificate from The Dog Training Mobile, to be used when the recipient and his/her family are ready to add the right dog into the household.
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