How to have a relaxing Christmas with your dog
Christmas is a time to gather with family and friends, and of course we want to include our favourite furry companions in the festivities.
For dogs though, Christmas isn’t all fun and games. It’s a busy day where their routine is turned on its head and they may struggle to find the space and time to relax. Even so, it’s easy to make sure your Christmas is pawfect for your pooch with a bit of pre-planning.
Here are our top tips for a cracking canine Christmas.
Make a safe space for your dog
Whether you’re staying at home or visiting relatives, make sure your pup has a safe space they can go to get away from it all when things get too much. If you’re away from home, make sure you bring a familiar bed or blanket, and pop it in a cosy spot away from the action.
Get out for a Christmas day walk
Between cooking the big roast dinner and snoozing in front of a Christmas movie, it’s easy to forget to get out and walk the dog on Christmas day. Wrap up warm and get that big Christmas walk in – you and your pup will love it. It’s actually the most active day of the year for PitPat pups, so make sure you join in on the fun.
Stick to dog friendly food
Christmas is all about the food. Whilst you want to make sure that your pooch gets in on the action, there are a few foods that are best kept well away from your pup. Avoid giving your dog festive favourites such as:
- Human desserts, including mince pies, Christmas pudding or Christmas cake
- Onions, garlic, leeks, and shallots
- Cooked and uncooked bones
- Anything roasted in fat, butter, or oil
- Anything with seasoning
To avoid your pup getting stuck into food that’s not so good for them, why not make them their very own Christmas treat. After all, why should they have to miss out?
Move presents from under the tree
We all love to see piles of presents under the tree and your dog will too. They might like them so much that they decide to open them early! Instead, place them out of harm’s way until Christmas morning.
Keep your decorations safe
Bouncy dogs and expensive glass baubles just do not mix. Keep the extra special decorations well out of your pup’s way, especially if they’ve got an especially waggly tail or fancy a nibble of tinsel here and there.
Supervise with visiting children
If you’re spending Christmas with children that your dog is unfamiliar with, you need to manage their interactions carefully. First, talk to the children about the safest way to interact with the dog. Make sure they know that they should leave the dog alone when it is asleep or in its safe space, and what appropriate play looks like.
You always need an adult to supervise interactions between the children and the dog, and be prepared to remove the dog from the situation if they show any signs that they are uncomfortable. It’ll help avoid any upset and keep your dog calm.
Supervise with visiting dogs
Not all dogs get along, so it’s wise to have a plan in place if your pup will be meeting other dogs this season. Introduce the dogs on neutral ground first, like a pleasant walk somewhere, to see how the dogs get along. Once things are going well, you can move on to the garden – make sure any high value toys or food are removed to avoid any conflict. Finally, you can move the dogs inside, again removing any high value toys or food. And don’t be afraid to move your dog to their safe space for a while if they need to calm down.
This Christmas make sure your pup gets a present that’ll keep on giving with a PitPat dog activity monitor. You’ll be able to track their activity and see just how much they’re up to, and they’ll get just the right amount of walkies to keep them healthy and happy. Get yours delivered in time for Christmas when you order before 2pm on the 21st December!