Sorry, cannot display the section at this time.

Spokesdog's Canine Couch

A journey about dogs and their people by Diane Rich

  • Comments

Ten Safety Tips for Fido During the Holidays

December 19th, 2012 at Wed, 19th, 2012 at 1:56 pm by Diane Rich

Chase Wishes all our Readers the Happiest of Holidays

cDiane Rich 2012

The holiday season is busy. Shopping,  getting the house ready for guests and celebration, cooking, cleaning, fine tuning decorations, wrapping presents, people running in and out of the house at warp speed.

The family pet observes the change of energy and senses the tension watching her people scurry around trying to get everything done in a timely manner. Changing the dog’s routine and exercise regimen may trigger some unique canine behavior. The housetrained dog may all of sudden potty in the house, a dog that normally delights in his chew toys may start to chew inappropriate or unsafe items,  the family dog may even present some extreme attention seeking behavior.  Now, some of these behaviors listed may just be S.O.P. but either way supervision is recommended if necessary. Confinement during hectic moments may be in order.

Ten tips to keep your furry family member safe this holiday season
1.  If your pet has a tendency to bolt out an open door or jump on guests, best to confine in a crate or behind a gate on the day of your party.  If going to parties rather than giving the parties is on the schedule some pet parents may choose to board their pets as to not watch the clock when enjoy festivities with friends and family
2. Avoid sharing the tasty leftovers with your dog, especially bones and fat.
3. Keep that glass of alcohol out of the reach of a thirsty or inquisitive pet
4. Coffee, tea, chocolate, macadamia nuts are a no no. Keep a tight lid on the garbage can and keep all garbage out of the dog’s reach
5.  If you are parenting a puppy, you may need to either keep the pup out of the room with the tree and presents or set up containment around the tree.
6. Should you not want to keep your pet out of the room with the tree, then make sure the tree is anchored well, so the pet cannot pull it over or knock it over
7. Some dogs are attracted to Christmas lights, ornaments, the tree itself, fallen needles from the tree, or water for the tree, best to keep the pet away from all of it.  Some pets may even lift their leg on your tree
8.  Lillies and yew are toxic to pets
9. Keep Christmas wrapping or ribbons and bows away from your pet
10. Post the number of your nearest emergency clinic within reach just in case

If you parent a young dog that you think will be too much for you during this busy time or if you entertain guests who may not respect your wishes such as not giving the dog table scraps, best to confine or supervise your pet during the festivities. Or, board your pet.

Diane Rich Dog Training, LLC

I have been training dogs and their people for over 25 years. I work with pups from 7 weeks old to senior plus dogs and offer basic obedience to advanced off leash training both privately and group classes. Other services include behavior consultations to help both ends of the leash with everything from aggression, puppy/dog manners and public manners to separation anxiety. As a "real world" dog trainer, I take training out of the classroom or home when both the pet and family are ready, and take training to the street. I also offer pet therapy training classes preparing both the handler and dog for their therapy test and future service as a therapy team. I also coordinate several pet therapy programs in the Seattle area. My complete bio, description of services, class dates and on line class registration is listed on my website at

More articles by  >
ABOUT COMMUNITY BLOGS: Community blogs are written by volunteers. They are members of our community but not employees of this site or newspaper. They have applied or were invited to blog here but their words are their own and are not edited by the editor or staff of this site, and have agreed to abide by our Terms of Use. The authors are solely responsible for their content. If you have concerns about something you read on a community blog, please contact the author directly or email us.

COMMENTING RULES: We encourage an open exchange of ideas in the community, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. In a nutshell, don't say anything you wouldn't want your mother to read.

So keep your comments:

  • Civil
  • Smart
  • On-topic
  • Free of profanity

We ask that all participants own their words by logging in with their Facebook account. It's a simple process that will take seconds and helps keep our comments free of trolls, cranks, and “drive-by” commenters. We reserve the right to remove comments from anyone using screen names, pseudonyms or false identities. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.