It’s already that time of year again! Christmas decorations are underway, including one of the most popular pieces of holiday décor: Christmas Trees. Be it live evergreens or even artificial trees, the tradition of Christmas Trees are deep-rooted. While popular in homes around the globe, pet parents need to know all about Christmas Tree safety tips for their four-legged family members.
Here’s what pet parents need to know about pet-proofing their Christmas Trees.
Picking The Perfect Christmas Tree Spot
All dogs have a preconceived notion that Christmas Trees are for them and their enjoyment. While pups may think this, the truth of the matter is there are things pet parents can do to keep their dogs safe from Christmas Tree hazards.
The first is to find a spot for the tree and determine whether or not the tree can be barricaded from ever-curious pup noses. Other barriers can include a door leading into the room, baby gates, and more.
If not anchored in place, Christmas trees can easily top over. Just ask a Belgian Malinois friend of Performance K9 Training who took it upon themselves to not only tip over the tree but insisted on pulling it through their doggie door. Yes, a true story.
Anchoring a tree on the bottom with a tree stand and the top with a ceiling hook offers a huge benefit.
Christmas Tree Ornaments Considerations
While ornaments on a Christmas Tree add to its beauty, they can be a significant hazard to dogs because they don’t know the difference between dog toys and ornaments.
For costly or fragile ornaments, place them towards the top portion of the tree and out of a dog’s reach. Delicate ornaments can cause abrasions in a dog’s mouth, and if ingested, more severe injuries in their intestinal tract.
For non-fragile ornaments and ones that don’t require ornament hooks, those can be considered for the lower portion of the tree just as long as they don’t pose a health risk. That said, do avoid tinsel and garland, because if swallowed, it could result in an intestinal blockage that could require major surgery.
Also, be aware of the risks that Christmas lights bring with a tree, including broken glass if bitten and ingested. Do tuck those lights deep into the branches of the tree and avoid dangling cords. Keep a watchful eye over the outlet and your dog to prevent any electrical shock.
Above all, never leave your pet unsupervised around a Christmas Tree.
Careful With The Christmas Tree Water
Please be mindful that the water used to keep holiday evergreens fresh throughout December is potentially dangerous to pets. Even though it’s just water that’s poured in the bowl, fertilizers, pesticides, and more used to keep cut Christmas Tree vibrant for weeks can leak into the water. While tree skirts draped over the reservoir can help as a deterrent, it’s not full-proof by any means.
While Christmas is a time for holiday décor and celebration, stay one step ahead in the festivities to keep your pets safe during this great time of year.