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How to help your dog cope with Christmas

Christmas may be a fun and exciting time for us, but not so much for our dogs.

Let’s look at it, from their point of view.

Weird outdoor green trees appearing in the living room, that would make an ideal place to pee up against. Instead humans are decorating it with bells and balls.

Everyone rushing around having no time for me.

Everything smells different, not sure if I should pee on it or chew it?

What the hell is happening?

Dogs are much more affected around the Christmas period than we think.

Here are a few tips to help your dog cope with Christmas.

Try to keep to the same routine as possible, which is easier said than done. I struggle to know what day of the week it is between xmas day and New Year. It is a good idea to feed your dog at the normal times.

Allow them to have their own space. You can create their own Christmas den maybe even have own room. Somewhere they can feel safe and can go when things get too much. Noisy children can really stress out dogs and don’t let visitors overcrowd your dog.

If you have visitors coming around then make sure your dog is well exercised.  He will be tired and hopefully you will have a sleep. Leaving you time to entertain your guests.

Encourage visitors to pop around before the big day, this will give them a chance to get to know them and feel more comfortable in their company. They could play with your dog or give them a treat.

Be very strict with visitors. Don’t let them fed your dog at the table. Your dog will learn this,  is how I get food now and will continue to beg for food. No – one can ignore a Labrador’s begging eye, but you must. He sees when you’re eating. He knows when you’re got snacks. I bet you are singing that in your head now!

Be careful that you don’t give your dog mince pies and Christmas pudding, as this contains raisins, sultanas and currants that can be harmful to dogs.

Turkey can be very rich and may cause an upset stomach to a dog with a sensitive stomach. Small amounts should be given and check for bones.

As people come and go a lot at Christmas, it might be a good idea to put up a sign on the door that says ‘keep the door closed’ so your dog doesn’t run out and get lost.

If you have an over excitable dog, that may jump up. When a visitor approaches your dog, if he starts to jump up, say ‘no’ in a calm voice ask him to sit instead and give a reward. He needs to be taught to do something else than jump up. You may need to do this a couple of times for him to get the idea. We don’t want granny falling over especially at xmas.

Get your dog involved at Christmas, it’s their day as well.

If you would like to receive more helpful tips then click on the link below.

Have a cracking christmas!

I’m off to put a lead on it

Harriet x

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