Holiday Proofing your Home for your Dog

With the holiday season upon us, we need to make sure that our environment is safe for man and beast. While other times of the year you may feel that your home is safe for your dog, the Christmas season can be especially dangerous for a new fur baby to the family or an old companion. Below are some common hazards that every household faces during the holiday season and a simple solution to keep every family member safe.

The Holiday Tree and/or Plants

Whether you set up an artificial tree or fresh one, a holiday tree presents several different hazards to your dog. First the decorations, which for some dogs seems to be irresistible temptation. This not only includes the ornaments but also the lights. Chewing on the ornaments can lead to cut gums, and tongue. In worst cases, chewing on ornaments can go beyond a cut mouth to glass in the stomach or even lead poisoning.  Tinsel is another holiday decoration that can cause harm, which included choking.

Holiday lights is another hazard that dogs seem to really like to chew on but normally do not chew on the lights strung on the tree. Instead, they typically go for the cord going into the wall. In most cases, if your dog gets shocked, it is simply a slight jolt but this jolt will cause a reaction that can cause your tree to come tumbling down.

Another hazard comes from other plants that are associated with the holiday. The particular plant I am talking about is the poinsettia. In the past, this plant has been viewed as highly poisonous to dogs and cats. But recently, this has belief has been questioned. In just, to keep your dog safe make sure that he/she does not chew on the poinsettia.

The solution to the holiday tree hazards is to always make sure that you monitor your dog when he/she is in the room with the tree or holiday plants. Another approach is to make sure that your dog does not enter the room with the tree and that other holiday plants are put up out of reach of your pet.


Having guests over for the holidays can cause trouble for your dog. This is especially true when kids sneak bites of food to the dog but……strongly discourage this habit. Simple ingredients like garlic and onions can be fatal. Also, do not feed your dog bones and/or skin from your holiday meal.

If you must treat your dog, give him/her the same meat you are eating or give them canned dog food formulated to their needs.

To prevent the feeding issue, make available a list of appropriate foods that your guests can give your dog or simply keep your dog out of the dining room while the meal is being served.


Believe it or not, those beautiful packages under the holiday tree are another source of danger for your dog. While you may be thinking that I am referring to the contents of the packages, believe it or not the danger begins with the packaging. All the ribbons and bows along with the wrapping paper can become a choking hazard for your dog.

The best solution to this problem is to keep your dog out of the room where the presents are located. If this is not possible, monitor your dog while he/she is in the room and make sure that all the paper and accessories are picked up.

While holiday time is upon us, make sure that your whole family is safe during this joyous time by creating a safe environment for both man and beast.