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holiday safety tips for dogs

Holiday Safety 2021

There is no question the holidays are fun for us and our dogs especially when family or guests are over. But things can take a quick turn for the worst if your dog laps up some alcohol or accidentally consumes a caffeinated product.  And if your dog has Territorial Aggression that's a whole other matter.

Dog Aggression

If you have a fearful, territorial or aggressive dog and they have not undergone behavior modification then here are some tips when having guests over.

  • If your uncertain whether your dog will be aggressive or has been aggressive in the past he best way to avoid an issue is find a safe zone for your dog like a crate or pen in a locked room. The way you might feel when your loud abnoxious cousin is over is the same way your dog feels when too many loud, pushy guests are over but its amplified.

  • If your dog is ok with guests but has some fearfulness, or is just more of a solitary animal you can let them roam and give them breaks in a locked room with or without a crate with some nice classical music playing.

  • Inform guests to keep away from food bowls if your dog is food aggressive

  • If your dog is fearful of strangers make sure guests do not corner them in and pat them over their head (dominance) or put their face near a dogs unless they want to get bitten. They should let dogs come to them. Guests can offer them treats if dogs are not biters.

  • If your dog has territorial aggression and they have bitten before consider letting them stay at a home where they are comfortable like at a parents or sister. 

  Is your Dog an Escape Artist ?

Dog escape artists
  • If you have Escape Artists & Wanderers. Everyone should take stock of where your pets are before opening outside doors and they should close doors quickly. Most importantly they should never leave an outside door open.

  • Keep dogs confined to a quiet secure room that is locked when you have parties

  • Play classical music or DogTV to keep dogs calm

  • Make sure your dog is microchipped

NOTE- If a collar is a must in the home use a Breakaway Collar with contact and health info attached and/or a GPS which could be lifesaving

 If you have Family/Friends in your Home enforce the following Rules 

Dangerous holiday foods for dogs
  • Guest cannot offer your dog any food and make it clear not to leave their food on coffee tables or end tables within paws reach.

  • Purses or Bags must be closed and out of paws reach as they may contain toxic medications or beauty products.

 Dangerous Holiday Foods/Drinks that Dogs should Not Consume

Dangerous holiday foods and drinks for dogs

Fatty (Bacon) or Spicy Foods, Grapes, Raisins, Sugar free candy (With Xylitol), Chocolate, Alcohol, Onions, Garlic, Macadamia Nuts, Nutmeg, Raw Dough (Can expand in the stomach)

If you suspect your best friend has gotten into any of these dangerous foods or any toxin you can call an animal poison control telephone hotline 24/7. 

Note- There may be a small cost associated when calling a poison control telephone hotline but its well worth it. 


Animal Poison Control Hotline

 Be Prepared in the event of an Accidental Poisoning

Pet Poisoning
  • Keep Activated Charcoal at home in case a Veterinarian or poison control expert suggests you administer it. Activated Charcoal adsorbs chemicals or toxic ingredients and facilitates its excretion via the feces.

  • Have a bottle of 3% Hydrogen Peroxide in case a veterinarian or poison control expert suggests inducing vomiting. Must not be expired.

IMPORTANT - Activated Charcoal or Hydrogen Peroxide should NOT be ADMINISTERED without first consulting with a Veterinarian or a Poison Control Center.

Other Holiday Dangers

Christmas tree safety for dogs
  • Christmas Tree Water if ingested as it may contain pesticides

  • Evergreen Needles if ingested can get stuck in your dogs intestines and require surgery

  • Exposed Christmas tree light electrical cords which if chewed can cause burns or electrocutions (Try cord covers)

  • Tinsel & Ribbon if swallowed may cause an intestinal blockage requiring surgery

  • Plants that may be toxic to pets if ingested include Amaryllis, Azaleas, Chrysanthemums, Evergreens, Holly, Ivy, Juniper, Lily, Mistletoe and Poinsettias which may cause vomiting but are lower in toxicity

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