How To Have A Safe Holiday For Your Dog

The holidays are when we get together, celebrate, and eat delicious meals.  We may even eat too much.  Maybe we eat too much because the smell of roasting turkey, baking pies, and everything else we cook on that day.

Now if you are a dog, Holiday gatherings are filled with smells that could make any dog drool.  In fact, those smells wafting through the air can be downright irresistible.  With the proper planning your dog can enjoy the holiday with you.

Facts About A Dogs Nose

  • Dogs Sense Of Smell Is 10,000 to 100,000 Stronger Than Us
  • We Have 6 Million Olfactory Receptors And Dogs Have Up To 300 Million
  • The Area Of The Brain That Processes Odors Is 40 Times Greater Than Ours
  • Dogs Exhale From Slits On The Sides Of Their Nose.
  • The Remaining Part Of The Nose Is Dedicated To Inhaling Odors

It’s easy to understand why dogs lurk around the kitchen and table.  From waiting for food to fall on the floor to outright begging, it is hard to deter them from doing so during the holidays.  Most dogs feel the floor is their domain and at times will gobble up what falls there before you can stop them.

Now that we understand why dogs have a hard time resisting holiday smells, it is important to know how to keep them safe.  If your immediate family will be joined by other people you can let them know not to give them food scraps.  This can be hard for kids to understand though.  Tell them if they do feed your dog it can get very sick.  This may help them think twice.

Your dog can still enjoy some of the delicious food you are making.  You can set aside unseasoned turkey meat and veggies.  Seasoning can cause illness and dogs enjoy the food without it.  Here is a list of foods unsafe for dogs.

  • Chocolate
  • Garlic and onions
  • Grapes and raisins
  • Cooked bones
  • Sugar fee human food
  • coffee
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Chewing gums
  • Alcohol
  • Xylitol

Keep the dog out of the kitchen while you are cooking and preparing the food.  If they are used to being in the kitchen, arrange a way to keep them out.  You could use a baby gate, place them in another room, use a crate, or send them outside to play.

The last thing you want to have happen is a hot dish or water landing on your dog and a possible vet visit.  Anything beyond a first degree burn can be life threatening.  First degree burns can become more serious a few days later so you need to monitor your dog closely.

Treating Dog Burns And Minimizing The Extent Of Damage

  • Flush Area With Cool Water Immediately
  • Apply A Cold Compress Or Bag Of Frozen Vegetables To The Area
  • Monitor Your Dog For Worsening Symptoms
  • If The Skin Is Red, Monitor Your Dog For Several Days
  • If The Skin Shows More Damage Than Redness, Rush Your Dog To An Emergency Vet
  • In The Event It Is A First Degree Burn You Should Contact Your Vet The Following Day
  • Failure To Immediately Care For The Burn Can Cause Shock, Nerve Damage, And Death

Some dogs may feel anxious when a lot of people are visiting or are sensitive to the noise.  Find a quiet place away from the crowd for them to hang out in.  Check in on them occasionally as a visit from you can calm them.  You might even want to board your dog that day if the stress is too much for them.

Let visitors know to watch out for your dog when they leave the house if your yard is not fenced.  With all the activity some dogs may want to escape, even if they do not normally run out the door when it is opened.  Exercising caution is the best way to make sure everyone has a happy holiday.

When you and your guests follow a safety protocol you can prevent your dog being harmed.  Knowing the risks allows you to be prepared in the event something does happen.  It is also a good idea to have a dog first aid kit for anytime of the year.

Do you want to understand your dog better?  Curious why he does certain things?  Lead Me On is ready to help you understand your dogs behaviors and how to work with them in a loving manner.  Call us today at (360)878-8407 and find out about our trainers.