At a time of year when we open our doors to guests and family it can be quite overwhelming for our dogs and of course even more so if they are new puppies. The food, decorations, excited children and adults can sometimes be too much, not just for us but for our dogs too. Here at Yellow Dog we are more than aware of how sensitive dogs can be and how change can affect them, so we hope these tips may help you if you are feeling the same.
Try to keep your decorations out of your dogs reach! Do not have chocolate decorations on the tree at all if possible, but if you must keep them high up. We have known dogs reach those and then after a hefty bill and time at the vets you will regret it! Dogs get excited too so all the smells, lights and activity makes them super hyper. It is important that they get some of their usual routines in, some good walks and playtime so they are tired through their own physical activity and can hopefully rest when the crowds appear.
Teach children to leave the dogs when they are sleeping or resting and to not offer them food. Of course this rule applies to all, no titbits from the table. Rather save some special treats, maybe a touch of cool gravy and make them a special little Christmas day lunch of their own in their bowl. Discourage children from running around with food in their hands, dogs love an easy treat! Be aware of the cracker time, the noises and escaping toys can be a problem. This might be a good time for your dog to be in another room and then let in once the crackers have been enjoyed and the meal begins, hopefully time when your dog will rest knowing you are all in one place for some time.
Make sure your dog has his own designated space to retreat to. Whether a cushion or crate be sure this is ready for him with fresh water near by so he knows where to relax without being disturbed. It is important that they can calm down and that their excitement does not elevate too much. Perhaps invest in a nice chew for the day that they can relax with.
So the best Christmas present you can give your dog is time and routine. Make sure you find some calm time to fuss over your dog as they have been used to, don’t forget to take them for their walk or let in the garden for a run around with their new ball. Have fun and enjoy the day with your dog and family.
Happy Christmas from us all at Yellow Dog.