Christmas Safety: 7 Top Tips For Dogs

by Catherine Tucker / Pet Owner Advice / 5 Dec 2017

Christmas, Safety Tips for Dogs, Christmas Trees, Pet Minding Safety tips, puppies, Christmas Decorations, Tinsel, Human Food Toxic For Dogs, Pancreatitis, Noise Anxiety, Dr Glen Richards

Tis the season to be jolly and of course our furry friends will be going the fun festivities with the rest of your family and friends.

Whether it’s your own pooch or one visiting for the holidays there are some potential dangers present for furkids during the festive season.

To ensure your own or visiting dogs remain safe and healthy throughout the Christmas celebrations read our top seven doggie dangers to watch out for.

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For humans we would enjoy nothing more than a meal enjoying plum pudding, chocolate, Christmas cake, stuffing in meats, fruit platter and more; but for your four-legged friends these could mean a trip to the vet.

These common foods contain ingredients such as chocolate, sultanas, raisins, grapes, onions, garlic and macadamia nuts which are toxic to dogs and are best to be avoided.

TOP TIP: Don’t leave any plates of food unattended and at a height, your dog can reach, and ensure your bins are secure as dogs are not beyond some dumpster diving to find food.

If you are concerned your dog has eaten something they shouldn’t have speak to a veterinarian immediately.

Read more: "10 Dangerous Human Foods For Your Pet"


We love to celebrate with a cold one or glass of wine but this is an absolute NO NO for dogs.

There is no safe amount of alcohol for your dog to have and effects will range from depressions, difficulty walking, slow breathing, collapse and even possible death.

TOP TIP: If you want to give your pooch a safe treat why not try Dog Beer. They are non-alcoholic, non-carbonated meat broth based drinks, sounds tasty right, and you can purchase or make your own.



“I’ll just give them a little bit of ham” doesn’t seem like it would hurt right? But when a dog is given a ‘little bit’ of ham ten times in one day it becomes a big bit of ham.

We love to spoil and treat our pets but it is important to remember what seems like a little to us, is actually a lot to them which can cause health issues.

Overindulgence can cause gut pain, vomiting, diarrhea and even pancreatitis.

PetCloud spoke to veterinary Dr. Glen Richards, from Channel 10’s hit show Shark Tank, who is reminding pet owners to be aware of the dangers of feeding pets overly rich or fatty foods.

“Often we'd see Pet Owners wanting to indulge their pets over Christmas, and the most common presentation was when pet owners would give leftovers to their pets and that fatty ham which can lead to pancreatitis," Dr. Glen Richards said.

“The pancreas is an organ in the body that helps digest food, but in actual fact, if you give a dog a big feed of fatty foods, the pancreas in a way almost starts digesting itself and they force them into pancreatitis.

“So perhaps just a tiny treat but keep feeding them their regular food.”

TOP TIP: Make sure to let your guests know not to feed your dog leftovers from their plate. If your pooch has particularly good puppy dog eye and pleading skills which guests may give into, restrain your dog safely either in a separate room of the house or outside.

You need to take the lead because if your fur baby is like ours it will never say no to food.



Summertime celebrations can mean parties and fireworks and let’s not forget those summer storms, all of which can be unpleasant for pets who are anxious to noise.

As a pet owner, you know your pet the best so always observe your pooch closely and look for the subtle signs for when they are unhappy or worried, and take action.

TOP TIP: Avoid the stress where possible. Make sure they have access to a quiet, safe retreat or book a pet carer for pet sitting or daycare to give them some quiet time out.



Christmas would not be complete without the fun and joy of a Christmas tree and there are a few things to consider to make it safe for dogs too!

Possible dangers include:

  • Electrocution: A risk for your pooches who love to chew if they get a hold of the Christmas tree lights.
  • Upset stomach: If you’re having a live Christmas Tree stagnant water at the base can be a breeding ground for bacteria. Dogs may drink this and feel sick. Also eating pine needles, though non-toxic they can cause irritation and discomfort.
  • Gut Injury: If glass ornaments are eaten
  • Gut Obstruction: Tinsel and other decorations are pretty but when eaten by dogs. This can result in the need for surgery
  • Strangle or choking: Gift wrappings such as plastic, ribbons or bows so after unwrapping quickly clean up all rubbish.

TOP TIP: To keep dogs safe from these dangers here is a checklist to make sure your Christmas tree is pet-friendly.

  • Cover the electric cord of the lights with plastic.
  • Cover or box tree stand so pets can’t drink the water.
  • Use plastic or non-breakable decorations, no glass.
  • Forgo the tinsel or place it high where it is out of reach.
  • Ensure decorations are secured and cannot fall off or be pulled off easily.
  • Stabilise your tree so it won’t be easily pushed over.



Beautiful plants and flowers which are popular at Christmas such as poinsettias, hibiscus, amaryllis, Christmas cactus, lilies, berries, holly leaves and mistletoe are all poisonous to your pets.

TOP TIP: If you have these in your home keep them out of their reach as ingestion could result in illness or even death.



Many toys for kids big and small require batteries which can be very dangerous for dogs.

If your pet swallows batteries it can cause awful sickness, anything from an upset stomach to burning their gut or a life-threatening obstruction!

Toys may also contain small plastic, rubber or metal parts which, if eaten, can cause your fur baby to choke or a gastrointestinal blockage.

TOP TIP: Given the inquisitive nature of pets make sure to keep these dangers well out of their reach and if ingested contact your vet immediately.


 Wishing all of our pet owners, pet carers and beautiful pets a happy and safe holiday season. 
 Sent with Love from the PetCloud Family


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