Keeping your dog safe and happy this ChristmasDecember 10, 2023
New Year, Healthier Diets: Balancing Your and Your Dog’s NutritionJanuary 3, 2024
We all know how much dogs love routine, and the withering looks they give us if we deviate from it. But what can we do at Christmas? All pretence of a normal doggie life disappears out the door, together with its toys, blankets, left over bones and their very old but wonderfully comfortable bed. Then hordes of strangers descend, with loads of fragile boxes and food which “they must not touch” It’s very tricky, almost as difficult as avoiding the enormous tree – inside the house – and hung with lots more things that “must not be touched”
It’s all very magical for us but can be confusing and frightening for our canine friends. So, we’ve put together some tried and tested tips which we hope you will find helpful so that your dog can also enjoy the festivities and feel a part of our Happy Christmas.
It’s the one routine your dog really won’t want to lose. It’s usually the high spot of his day, he will be reassured and, if you take some treats along, he’ll know he hasn’t been forgotten. Here at the Happy Mutt Co, we have created an entire range of handmade, freshly baked treats your dog will love. With 100% natural ingredients, you’ll be nourishing your dog as well as spoiling him. Try Doggie Dippers with specially formulated peanut butter – free from Xylitol – and our new banana and peanut butter paw biscuits, sweetened with honey.
Christmas lunch is mostly bad news for dogs. Almost everything that we humans love – turkey skin, stuffing, chocolate, Christmas pud and so on are at best harmful and at worst poisonous for our dogs. They can put his digestive system under stress and can lead to serious illnesses. We suggest you stick to some turkey meat, no skin, and some green vegetables, boiled, no oil. They will be perfectly happy with that, but it’ll be demolished in 2 minutes flat, and that’s often a problem. We have the perfect solution. If you want to keep your faithful friend happy and occupied, the first thing to be sure of is that you have a varied selection of treats lined up. Not just any old treats but the handmade sort that are made of natural ingredients. Dip n Bitz for example, our own brand of dog friendly peanut butter with a crunchy topping, spread onto a licky mat will keep him happy while you enjoy your Christmas feast.
It might also be a good idea to ask your guests to join you in keeping your dog safe and happy this Christmas. Very often, people are simply not aware that certain foods are harmful to dogs.
CHRISTMAS TREE & DECORATIONS
When you bring the tree into the house, try and do it with the minimum of excitement and noise. Give him time to sniff around it and this way he will become used to it sooner rather than later. Once it’s safely positioned, spend some time with him, calmly letting him sniff and explore it. He’ll be reassured and that will help him process and cope better with this new, hugely interesting addition to the house space.
If you get a natural tree, make a point of hoovering or sweeping up the dropped pine needles every day. As well as being a bit prickly for curious paws and noses, they can contain poisonous pine sap. Artificial trees can also cause problems if eaten so pay attention to your puppy, older dogs have usually grown out of that eating anything phase.
DECORATING THE TREE
As with the tree, try and introduce the decorations as calmly as possible and keep those hanging chocolate ones well out of reach. Glass baubles are very much out of fashion these days, most are made of plastic now, but it makes sense to keep grandma’s family decorations in the loft. They can shatter and cause real problems. If you buy Christmas lights with batteries, you can prevent your dog from chewing on all those cables. If you want to use plug in ones, there are sturdy cable shields or hide them away and box them off.
PRESENTS FOR YOUR FAMILY & DOG
Present opening is a very exciting time for dogs, crinkly wrapping paper and new smells and presents of their own. But not too many because it’s important to make sure that your dog doesn’t get too excited, it can be very hard for them to calm down again. A bouncy, over-excited dog can make things quite stressful for guests who have presents of their own to open. Most importantly DON’T LEAVE PRESENTS UNDER THE TREE, especially the ones containing food. Dogs have an incredible sense of smell and can sniff out those chocolate bon bons from a mile away. Ditto anything that squeaks, so keep your eyes peeled and make sure your gifts are well out of reach when you go to bed.
FIREWORKS & CHRISTMAS CRACKERS
All dog owners know that fireworks are great fun for us, and especially the children, but not for dogs. That goes for crackers with a bang too, it makes sense to take your dog to his basket or usual safe space and break out the licky mat and try him with one of the many flavours of DIPZ and BITZ with his favourite peanut butter. That will keep him distracted and happy
We hope that these suggestions will help you put a few safety measures in place so that you and your family can enjoy a marvellous, problem free Christmas – and your four legged friend too.