Of course when we had Goldie he thought this was a great cause for excitement!
His face said it all - why was a TREE - that looked like a TREE but didn't smell like a TREE coming in the house ! There was a lot of sniffing and tail wagging !
Have to admit we had some qualms about it the first year as well, without going into too much detail, he was a male dog and trees were his fave choice to errr relieve himself !!
Anyway I recall that first year when he was just over a year old we had a little talk and told him that this Tree was a special tree, unlike any other and not to be peed on.....
Well you know what.... he never did. What a good boy he was.
He did love to "help" us with the decorations though and his tail wagged so fast when they came out of the box. We had to be so careful though as being a retriever, any stray ones were fair game for retrieving, so this was a highly supervised operation!
Goldie had an incredibly soft mouth for carrying but tree decorations are dangerous and we kept him away from them, eventually with the bribery of his fave Nylabone or his much loved Dog Kong Toy filled with something tasty to keep him busy while the "action" was ongoing. Once they were on the tree he lost all interest, so then we were good.
However we NEVER left Goldie alone in a room with the decorations, just a risk we did not wish to take.
We went for artificial trees in our home. We had a disaster one year with my previous dog, when she got a tree pine needle thorn stuck in her paw on Christmas eve and we had a mercy dash to the Vet Christmas eve night. She was a very stoic Labrador but this was painful even for her. Not sure we were his fave customers that night, but she needed help and fast. So after that it was an artificial tree for us every time.
So we learned our lesson and it also highlights what a dangerous time Christmas can be for pets. Be so careful about tree pine needles that may be stepped on and ornaments than may be broken and or even eaten! Best to keep presents out of the way in case of a chewing dog going right through them all and disappointed faces Christmas morning.
Or worse an emergency trip to the vet to have an operation to remove a "gift" from the dogs tummy!
Food at this time of year is often of the dangerous sort for many pets. Never let your dog near chocolates or nuts or any of the rich food we suddenly start to eat. At best they will be ill and no one ever wants to clear up dog sick, at worst it could be fatal....
Goldie got his extra treats but they were a slice of turkey and a few dog treats, not too much just enough for treat for him. He was more than happy and loved us playing games with him more.
Christmas can be such a happy time and as long as pets are supervised and taken into account they can enjoy it too. If you have a dog though they will still need the same walks and time as of any other time of year. We loved those Christmas walks so much they are a joy !
More on Goldies Christmas next time. ...
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