Keeping Your Dog Safe In The Cold Weather

Adverse weather conditions can put your pet in harm’s way if you are not adequately prepared.

Limit Your Dog’s Exposure To Cold

Let’s face it, whether playing in the sunshine or romping in the snow, most dogs love being outside. Dogs get excited to play outside and may want to stay in the cold longer than they should. Dogs can get Frostbite so limit their exposure.

Always Keep Your Dog On Leash

In the winter, dogs can lose their scent if they become lost or disoriented in a snow storm, so always keep your dog on leash. According to the ASPCA more dogs are lost in the winter than in any other season. Of course, all pets should wear a collar and up-to date ID Tags all year round.

Never Leave Your Dog In A Cold Car

During cold winter months, your car’s temperature drops dramatically after being turned off. Never leave your dog unattended inside your car, even if just for a few minutes. Your pet might love to travel with you, but they also love to sleep on the couch. Let them stay home, safe and warm.

Let Your Dog’s Coat Grow A Bit

Never shave your dog’s coat all the way down during the winter months. Your dog’s natural coat is their first line of protection against the cold. When bathing your dog in the winter, always dry them off completely with an absorbent dog towel.

Invest In A Warm Dog Jacket

If you have a small dog, or a big dog that will be outside during extreme cold conditions, invest in a high quality Dog Jacket, coat or Dog Sweater. The extra protection is well worth it. You wouldn’t go outside without a coat – would you? Provide A Warm Dog

Bed And Dog Blanket

When the temperatures drop, all dogs love to snuggle up in a comfy, cozy Dog Bed. Providing a warm, soft Dog Blanket for those cold winter nights is a nice way to make your pet’s life a bit more comfortable.

**NOTE: If you have anti-freeze in your garage, or other potential poisons, store them up and out of your pet’s reach.

Keeping Your Dog Safe For The Holidays

Visiting Guests I ALWAYS recommend having dog ON leash when guests visit, even if the dog is dragging it. It will give you an extra level of control.

Dogs And Children: What’s The Commotion? For many, this may be your dog’s first holiday experience. Your dog may not be accustomed to children running around and playing with loud toys. Conversely, some children may be afraid of your dog. Take time to introduce children and dogs properly always being mindful of them while they interact. Keep a close eye out for any signs of stress (on the part of the child or pet). If your dog or the child seems uncomfortable in any way, simply remove your dog to another room or safe spot like a crate. Ensuring the safety of both child and pet is paramount during the holiday season.

Dogs And Holiday Guests: Basic Manners Everyone appreciates a dog with good manners. A dog that can gracefully interact with family and friends during the holidays is a joy to behold. However, just like people, most dogs aren’t born with these skills. They need to learn how to be good boys and girls and this takes time (as any dog owner will attest). So use the leash to control the dog and have appropriate interactions with the visiting humans. It will be up to you to show and instruct guests how to interact with your dog.

Holiday Tips:

 Give your dog some extra exercise and attention before your guests arrive. As the saying goes, “A good dog is a tired dog!”

 Make sure your dog has a “safe place” like a crate or bedroom where he can go to get away from noise and people.

 Nobody likes a beggar, so put Fido in a down stay or put them away when you are ready to serve food.

 NEVER leave your dog unattended with children. Even if your dog loves kids, be sure to supervise all interactions. Again, think safety first!

 Instruct children on how to behave with your dog. For instance, if you know your dog is timid around kids ask them not to approach your dog, and be sure to provide a safe and comfortable space for Fido away from children.

 Give your dog appropriate potty breaks throughout the day to avoid accidents in the house.

 Keep your delicious holiday goodies out of Fido’s reach. Even the most well behaved dog can turn into a “counter-surfer” if tempted. Keeping some dog treats on hand to deflect your dog away from people food is always a good idea.

 Use a trash can with a locking lid or put the can under the sink or in a closet.

 If you need, utilize a dog gate keep Fido out of the kitchen and dining area.

 Keep small toys, wrapping paper, and tape out of your dog’s reach just as you would with a small child.

 Give Fido something to occupy himself like a bone, dog toy, or interactive puzzle toys. Not only will you engage him physically, you’ll challenge his ability to problem solve and lessen his boredom while you’re occupied with guests.

This season remember be safe, have fun and most importantly spend time with your loved ones – two and four legged!

Other Dangers

Chocolate, Chocolate, Chocolate We get panicked calls EVERY year about a dog that’s gotten into chocolate!!

Chocolate contains a stimulant called theobromine, similar to caffeine, however, this is highly toxic to cats and dogs. Various things can affect the toxicity level including type of chocolate and the weight of your pet. The Darker the chocolate the more dangerous! And symptoms can range from diarrhea and vomiting, seizures and tremors, to death!

So PLEASE be diligent in keeping chocolate AWAY from your dog!!

If your pet manages to sneak a chocolate or two, go to the Chocolate Toxicity Calculator on this website: You may need to take your dog to the vet or induce vomiting within the first couple of hours after they have eaten it!.

Fake Snow Fake Snow can contain alcohol or substances such as antifreeze, which if eaten can be extremely toxic to pets –– especially cats. Be aware of fake snow on decorations, Christmas trees or in cans or sprays.

Tinsel Love it or hate it, tinsel is everywhere at Christmas. It may be irresistible to playful pups and kitties, but if they ingest it can cause intestinal blockages. So keep it out of their reach, and try and discourage them from playing with it.

Wrapping Paper, String And Tape Again, these stationery items may be seen as top toys for your pet, but if consumed in large amounts they can also cause obstructions in the stomach. When wrapping up gifts, make sure it’s kept out of their reach, and once the presents have been unwrapped, clean up and put in a secure bin.

Candles There’s nothing more festive than a cozy candle lit room. However, candle flames can burn curious paws and noses. Candles can also be knocked over by wagging tails and cause a fire.

Likewise, scented wax can be enticing to pets and they may try to lick it, which can burn tongues and be toxic if ingested in large amounts.

Raisins, Grapes, Mince Pies, and Christmas pudding Grapes, currants, raisins and sultanas are toxic to cats and dogs. They can cause issues such as serious kidney failure. Although, it’s not known how many it takes to be harmful, it’s best to ensure pets steer well clear of them entirely.

Blue Cheese Blue Cheese contains roquefortine C, which dogs are extremely sensitive to –– if consumed, it’ll give them a very upset tummy, which is both unpleasant for you and them.

Electrical Cords Electrical cords are everywhere around the holidays. Keep cords away from chewing pets by taping them to walls, using cord protectors, or hiding them behind furniture, under carpets, or under a tree skirt. A dog may get tangled and bring down a tree.

Fire Starter Logs Dogs that enjoy chewing should steer clear; these logs contain sawdust and paraffin which can cause an irritated stomach or even intestinal blockage when ingested.

Christmas Tree Needles Make sure your dogs do not chew on limbs or droppings from the tree. Ingested pine needles could get lodged in the intestinal tract, puncturing the lining or bunching together and causing an intestinal obstruction.

Christmas Tree Water Base: The water base of a Christmas tree may actually contain dangerous chemicals that could harm your pet.

Plants Most of us love to decorate with festive holiday plants, but unfortunately, most popular seasonal plants are off-limits to cats and dogs and are some of the biggest holiday dangers for pets. Even non-toxic plants can cause major gastrointestinal problems if ingested. Here are some of the most common poisonous holiday plants for pets:

  • Azaleas
  • Amaryllis
  • Evergreens
  • Ivy
  • Lily
  • Juniper
  • Holly
  • Mistletoe
  • Chrysanthemums
  • Poinsettias (these are actually the least toxic plant on this list. They are low in toxicity but can cause irritation to the stomach and mouth, resulting in vomiting.

Christmas Dinner Cookies for Dogs Fitting Christmas dinner into one cookie for our fur baby!


 3 ½ cups whole-wheat flour

 1 tsp. baking powder

 1 egg

 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth

 1 cup cooked, shredded white meat turkey

 1 cup dried unsweetened cranberries

 1 Tbsp. olive oil

Directions Preheat the oven to 350° degrees. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine baking powder and flour in a large bowl. Stir in turkey and cranberries.

Mix in ½ cup broth, the egg, and the olive oil. Mix together to create a dough, adding more broth if needed. Roll out the dough. Cut cookies. Bake 25 minutes until browned.