Make Sure You Are Protecting Your Pup From Food Hazards During the Holidays

It's that time of the year! The holidays are here!  We really want your Pup to be safe this holiday season. So here are some great tips! We've got a post that we've put together with our friends from Dog Fence DIY to help you get everything in order before Santa arrives!

This holiday season, one of the things you’re probably looking forward to the most is feasting on all the delicious food. From sweet treats to savory roasts, there are so many things to enjoy, even if it means gaining a little extra winter weight in the process.

With such a keen sense of smell, your dog will also be excited by all of the festive food. However, for your dog, indulging can actually be life-threatening. Besides using the best dog fence known to mankind to prevent your dog from accessing the food, what practical steps can you use to keep them safe? Here’s what you need to watch for and what you can do to prevent food-related holiday disasters.

Human Foods to Avoid Feeding to Your Dog

There are many foods that can make your dog sick, but some can kill them if ingested in even small amounts. Alcohol, chocolate, and the sugar substitute xylitol are the most dangerous, especially dark chocolate and unsweetened baking chocolate.

Make sure these items are kept out of your dog’s reach entirely, and ask guests not to leave any alcohol filled beverages unattended where your dog might find them and be inspired to take a taste.

Even in small doses, your dog can experience symptoms from diarrhea to seizures, or even damage their heart muscles and urinary tract system if they ingest the wrong foods.

It is also important that you isolate your garbage cans to ensure your dog is not digging for scraps that may endanger its health. Many homeowners have opted for a small electric dog fence installation as the means to keep their pups away from outdoor garbage bins.

Did you know grapes, macadamia nuts, coffee, tea, and raisins also contain toxins that can cause your dog to get very sick. Fatty foods are particularly dangerous, because they can cause pancreatitis, which may require hospitalization to cure and is very painful for dogs. Gravy, turkey skin, and other foods with high fat contents should never be given to dogs.

Do not give your dog any leftover bones, either, because they can splinter and pierce the throat, stomach, or intestines. These items can be deadly for dogs and often when eaten result in a trip to the vet or worse surgery. 

Make Sure You Monitor Food Preparation Areas

While cooking your holiday meal, make sure your dog doesn’t ingest any uncooked meat or uncooked yeast dough. Uncooked meat can contain dangerous bacteria such as E. coli, and uncooked yeast dough can rise in your dog’s stomach and cause a potentially life-threatening rupture. It’s best to keep your dog out of the kitchen entirely while you’re cooking.

Keep your dog in a separate room behind a closed door, or utilize a baby gate or indoor electronic dog fence to ensure your dog can’t access the kitchen at all.

The safest thing you can do this holiday season is to avoid giving your dog any table scraps whatsoever. Even table foods that are nontoxic can cause your dog to get sick or even choke. If you want to give your dog something special for the holidays, purchase some TurboPUP bars and have them on hand for a special treat.

Christmas Tree Dangers to Be Aware Of

If you’re bringing a live Christmas tree into your home this year, be aware that pine needles can be toxic to dogs. Many dogs are attracted to pine needles that fall on the floor, and eating the sharp needles can also cause a tear in your dog’s mouth, throat, or stomach.

The water inside your Christmas tree stand becomes more dangerous the longer it stays there. If it's not changed daily, it will collect all the pesticides that were used on your tree, as well as bacteria that will grow in the stagnant water. This is why you need to avoid having your dog drink this water. Plus some people choose to mix the water with chemicals to preserve their trees and a thirsty dog might be willing to overlook this and lap it up quickly.

Even artificial trees can contain toxic chemicals, so don’t allow your dog to chew on the branches. Glass ornaments, tinsel, and garland can all cause serious internal injuries if ingested.

Christmas light strands can cause fatal electric shocks if your dog chews on them. Your dog can even be injured if the Christmas tree falls on top of them, so consider anchoring your tree to the wall. If your dog will not leave the tree alone, block their access to it with a baby gate or with an indoor invisible dog fence.

If you decide to go with an invisible fence indoors these online reviews can help you choose a fence that will work well for your dog and your home.

Other Potentially Edible Holiday Hazards

Poinsettias, mistletoe, and holly are also toxic to dogs. While these festive plants look great in your home, please consider opting for the artificial versions.

If someone gifts you a holiday plant, make sure you keep it out-of-reach of your dog. If your dog eats something they shouldn’t, or if they get sick or begin behaving unusually, call your veterinarian’s office immediately.

If you decide a containment and training solution is just the right thing for you and your dog we encourage you to visit our friends at They offer many educational resources and detailed installation instructions for those willing to put sweat equity instead of paying thousands of dollars for a dog fence installation.

Richel Newborg
Richel Newborg