5 tips to ensure your furry friend has a safe and fun Christmas

As the year 2021 draws to a close many pet-lovers like to shower them with love, attention, and treats, reveling in the festivities together.
Image Courtesy: IANS
Image Courtesy: IANS

New Delhi

However, while the sentiment is one of deep, familial love, there are a number of things that pet parents need to be mindful of during the festive season, to avoid causing unintentional stress or harm to their pets.
Ensure all decorations are secure and out of reach
Be it Christmas or the New Year, decorations are a part and parcel of the celebration. From colourful tinsel and a Christmas trees to hangable snowflakes, balloons, and more, the sight of a fully decked up house on a cosy winter morning can immediately fill us with joy. However, dog owners must make sure that these decorations are completely secure and out-of-reach, because many components in them such as plastics, artificial colours, and more, could be very harmful to your dogs. Hanging decorations should be placed high enough, while the Christmas tree or presents and more should be in an area that is cordoned off.
Be mindful of open flames
Needless to say, if candles, lamps, or any other items with a flame are a part of your decorations, you must ensure they are only placed where they cannot be accessed by your dog. Besides being a massive fire hazard already, these small but potentially destructive objects can be easily knocked over by an enthusiastic dog, ending up hurting them, or in the worst case, burning down the house. So, always be careful about decorations with open flames, and never leave them unattended.
Be careful with electricals and wirings
Another quintessential component of Christmas and New Year decorations are lights, and they can instantly warm up your house in a dreamy glow. From quaint fairy lights to star-shaped fixtures, holiday lights come in a variety of shapes, sizes, colours, with a dizzying number of wirings and tangly parts, all with high-voltage current passing through. So, while putting them up, owners must make sure they are either hanging out of reach or are neatly tucked away so that your dog doesn't end up tripping over them or inadvertently chew on them when you're not looking.
Avoid giving human food to your dogs
While the temptation to shower your dog with treats while you're gobbling on some delectable holiday specialities is fully understandable, what's good for you might be extremely dangerous for your pet. Holiday confectionaries, meals, and candies all contain substances that could be very harmful to dogs, from chocolate and dairy products to cooking spices and more. Instead, either buy or make separate treats for your pet that are specifically meant for them, so they can join in on the festivities and be a part of the celebrations.
Make sure your dog has a safe space
Finally, while the exuberance of the celebratory occasion might be the highlight of your day or even the month, dog-owners must realise that it could very easily become overwhelming for your beloved furry friend. The flurry of activities, multiple unfamiliar people, and a hotchpotch of commotion and celebration could make your dog feel very anxious, confused, and stressed. Therefore, it is just as important to ensure they have their own familiar space that is comfortable and calming to retreat to when it gets too much. A safe corner or room that is cordoned off from the rest of the house, and has their favourite blanket, toy, or other familiar objects, helps give them the peace and calmness they need, once the initial excitement wears off and it's time to rest.

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