Holiday No-Nos for Fido

Brown dog carrying a log with his mouth

The holidays come with plenty of excitement for the family, and that includes your four-legged family members! 

We understand that getting everything ready for a spectacular holiday season is taxing enough already, but it’s essential to take a moment to consider your pets’ safety.

When Your Pup Is Home for the Holidays

If you’re hosting a holiday celebration, then there’s a good chance your dog will be right there with you. You know your dog better than anyone, so it’s crucial for you to really think about how they’ll react to suddenly having a bunch of people in their domain.

Maybe your dog is a seasoned party host and knows how to charm your guests. Or maybe this is your pup’s first time with so many people in their territory. Your dog may feel anxious, and they may become shy or territorial. 

The best thing you can do for your pooch is to give them everything they need to be comfortable when the guests arrive. You probably don’t want to lock them a room for the entire event, so here are some things you can try:

  • Have their favorite treat on hand and have new people introduce themselves with a treat
  • Give them a chew or doggy-approved bone when everyone’s in the kitchen cooking or eating a meal
  • Give them a puzzle toy to keep them distracted while the humans are opening presents

And to keep them safe, here are some things to avoid:

  • Food including raw meat, poultry bones, fatty foods, chocolate, alcohol, yeasts and doughs, dishes with spices, and vegetables from a can
  • Letting your dog hang out in the kitchen when there are a lot of people working on meal prep, as your pup can get stepped on or swallow something they shouldn’t
  • Putting holiday plants such as holly or mistletoe within your dog’s reach (call your vet immediately if they happen to eat one of these)
  • Setting up candles or open flames at your dog’s level without adequate barriers

For the Pup Who’s Going on a Holiday Vacation

Whether you’re going out of town yourself or you know your pup will be extremely overwhelmed at home during a holiday celebration, you may decide to board your dog.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with boarding your dog for the holidays because it gives them a safe environment to play with other pups. It really is like a vacation for them!

However, you have to start planning now.

The holidays are the busiest time of year for boarding businesses, so making your reservation ASAP is essential. This isn’t something you want to wait for until the last minute. 

Like having your dog at home with you, boarding them is all about their comfort. If you’ve boarded them in the past, then you probably already know what the process is like and have people your dog loves to see.

If this is your first time boarding your dog, you likely (and rightly) are feeling some trepidation. Our pets are important family members, and you want to make sure that whatever boarder they’re with will treat them as such.

Many pet boarding facilities also offer other services, such as training and doggy daycare. We recommend that you bring your dog to a daycare session to meet the other pups that frequent the playpen and meet the dedicated humans that will be caring for them.

A daycare date gives you a chance to try out a facility before committing to an overnight boarding. It’ll make you feel better and will make your pup feel more at ease.

Book your pup’s vacation immediately before the rooms fill up once you find the boarding place you want to work with. You can also schedule daycare dates periodically leading up to the holidays to help them acclimate to the surroundings. That way, when the time comes to drop them off, you’ll both feel at ease.

Check out this article for more information about what you should and shouldn’t bring when boarding your pup.

At Ruffgers, we offer three paw-tastic locations for your pet to enjoy a phenomenal holiday doggy trip. Each site also provides training and daycare services, and you can talk to our incredible staff about any questions you may have. 

Get in touch with us by filling out this online form or calling one of our location numbers below.