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Woof Wednesday: Christmas Tree Doggy Safety

They're alllll mine!

"Oh no, he's EATING SANTA!"

Have you decked the halls yet with your howl-iday decor? What do the dogs think? Have they joined in the spirit of ho-ho-ho and wreaked havoc? Or do they ignore the festivities?

Magic with Santa Hat

"You want me to wear what? Why?"

I have to admit that when our Magical-Dawg first arrived, his teeth made their mark on anything that didn’t move faster than he did. The baseboards still need touching up, and even the wall next to the kitchen pet-door could do with some new plaster. There are even toothy paw-tograph remains in the spool-shaped spindles on the base of the pine coffee table in the living room. BAD owner for not watching, BAD owner!

Magic was born in July, and he came to live with us in early October. So when it came time to put up that year’s tree, I weenied out. We didn’t put up a tree until two years ago when he was three years old and had sorta-kinda-in-a-way learned to control himself. I already had practice from dealing with the Seren-kitty’s tree love affair (you’ll see more about THAT on the Feline Friday blog).

So how do you handle doggy interest in your yule plans? Are your puppies ho-hum or holiday happy over the change in scenery? For puppies, the Christmas season can be a challenge for owners. Your puppy may believe the Christmas tree is a special gift just for his entertainment. The attraction is natural, with puppies wanting to chew branches, pull off decorations, or worse. The result is a holiday that’s anything but merry.

Puppies turn everything into a toy. The branches beneath the tree create a great puppy hideout. Tree ornaments that move or make noises lure puppies to grab and chase, garland offers a great game of tug-o’-war, and the twinkling lights draw them to investigate or even chew. That can lead to electrical shock that might even require rescue breathing to save the pup’s life. Trees end up toppled, presents and decorations damaged, and sometimes pets are hurt. My latest article offers you 14 tips for Christmas tree safety for dogs and they apply to any age canine.


This month as a special “thank you” to all my furry-fantastic-followers, I’ll give away a paw-tographed copy of Complete Care for Your Aging Cat and Complete Care for Your Aging Dog. To get in the running, simply post a comment in the blog about your special pet (old fogey or not) and I’ll draw two names at the end of the month. You can use these award-winning updated books as a resource for yourself or wrap up for a pet-friendly holiday gift to a fur-loving friend. And as an EXTRA-special incentive–and to encourage all of y’all to mentor each other and spread the blogging/twitter/Facebook love–the two winners get to name one purr-son who gives them wags of support and deserves a book, too! Get your comments in TODAY (on any of November’s blogs) and I’ll draw names and announce on Friday.

#AskAmy Sweet Tweets

Folks who “follow” me on Twitter @amyshojai and @About_Puppies are the most awesome Sweet Tweets around–they love #cats and #dogs and #pets, many #amwriting. We’ve become a great community including those in the #MyWANA social network twibe hosted by the awesome @KristenLambTX.  So I’m stealing borrowing Kristen’s methods and creating my own hashtag. Just follow and include the #AskAmy in your tweets if’n you’re interested in pithy links to articles, books, blogs, experts, fictioning and sparkle-icity!

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered? Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, listen to the weekly radio show, check out weekly FREE PUPPY CARE newsletter, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter with pet book give-aways!

About amyshojai

Amy Shojai, CABC is a certified animal behavior consultant (dogs/cats), award winning author of 30+ pet care titles and thrillers, and spokesperson to the pet industry.

6 responses »

  1. I stopped one of my dogs from attempting to eat glass ornaments last year. More than once. Which is why they are always supervised (more so than the kids, now that I think about it).

  2. Thanks for warning people about this. Our chihuahuas never ate anything they shouldn’t have; of our boxers only one ate something she shouldn’t have — a piece of bologna my father fed her and then he had to watch for the rind to be sure it passed. It did. They were closely watched but I didn’t realize how much trouble other doggies got into until I was an adult.

    I’m throwing my name in the pot again to see if I am the lucky winner of your book on aging cats since our dear one is aging which of course beats the alternative.

    • Hi Brenda, glad you found the blog! Oh yes, the bologna rind is a favorite and usually (thankfully!) short strands that don’t cause too much problem. A huge danger this time of year is the string from binding/lifting the turkey. All soaked in good flavors and smells, dogs (and some cats) try to eat it and can get in deadly danger. We keep our garbage inside a covered container behind a latched door.

  3. Pingback: Blog Treasures 12-2 « Gene Lempp's Blog

  4. Pingback: Woof Wednesday: Pets & Poison Plants! « Amy Shojai's Blog

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