Even if I find it too difficult to achieve all these lofty goals, I think that 2018 will be a year of growth for me! Do you have any New Year’s resolutions in mind for yourself or your pets? Let me know in the comments!
Let’s admit it: dog owners and those who pick out new and unique gifts for a friend’s pooch have just as much fun as Rover. Maybe more. There’s a decidedly humorous element to it that’s fully in keeping with holiday frivolity and Christmas high spirits. You may appreciate that your Beagle or Dachshund has a nice doggie jacket to keep him warm on those frosty January walks, but it’s also cute and funny to watch him waddle around in his new fur-lined Christmas wrap. So keep those wooden dog puzzles and Bubbletastic bubble machines coming. It’s Christmas time!
Fun for all
Your first consideration is something that’ll make your dog happy, something that’s appropriate for his size, breed and temperament. But don’t forget your friends and how much fun they can have getting your dog a triceratops dog costume (complete with horn and all). Or a Hyper Dog Ball Launcher, a cross between a slingshot and a crossbow that fires a tennis ball up to 200 feet for your dog to chase.
And since it’s the holidays, your pooch should be able to enjoy a little wine, doggie wine that is. Pawsecco’s “white” or “red” have become big sellers since hitting the market in March. Don’t worry, it’s made of ginseng, elderflower and other all-natural ingredients. Not a hint of alcohol.
Fence me in
Sometimes, the best gift idea is one that addresses a clear need, like protecting your dog from harm. One very good way to do that is to ensure he can’t escape and run away from home. Why not ask for help paying to install a fence so you never have to worry about roaming the neighborhood? According to Homeadvisor.com, the average cost of a chain-link fenceranges from $1,399 to $3,672, and takes a day or two to install.
If your dog is incurably curious about the outside world, you could install a Dog Peek window if you have a wooden fence. This rounded glass extrusion allows your furry friend to keep tabs on the neighbors, know when it’s time to bark at the mailman, or just watch the cars go by from the safety of your yard.
In case he does manage to give you the slip, there’s always the Tagg GPS pet tracker, a security device that lets you track your pooch wherever he runs. High-tech capabilities include text and email alerts sent to you as soon as your dog escapes, and an interactive virtual map that shows you exactly where he’s gone.
Yuletide dog treats
Some people just like to bake, no matter who it’s for. There are lots of tasty recipe options for people who might want to whip up batch of goodies such as gingerbread dog snacks, dog candy canes or bacon dog treats.
As you consider what dog-related items to include on your Christmas wish list, think of what needs you might address. If you worry about your pet’s safety, that might suggest gift ideas that can help protect him. Whatever you choose, be sure to incorporate plenty of fun. Everyone (pups included!) should have a good time at Christmas.
Another big time of year is approaching: Thanksgiving! Last year, I was thankful for meeting my dog cousin, Ellie, and all the attention from my family members. Everyone petted and complimented me. This year, I look even better. I can’t wait!
Thanksgiving is also great because of all the smells. There are so many beautiful foods on the table, and I wish I could eat them all like the humans do. This isn’t my first time with the holidays, so I’ve made some mistakes and learned a few things. As a dog, I know it can be tempting to eat anything within reach. It’s quite hard to pull away sometimes. Here are my tips for preventing holiday mishaps!
Never let your dog or cat have access to food during Thanksgiving.
I know it’s tempting to feed your dog when they’re sitting and begging and being cute. I’m guilty of this manipulation tactic myself, I can’t help it, but it’s important for you not to give in! There are lots of yummy tidbits on the holiday table that can cause stomach upset or worse.
Make sure all the food is secure and in a place that animals can’t reach it. You’ll be thankful that you don’t have to leave while company is over to take your pet to the emergency vet!
Think about safe disposal.
Make sure every great smelling thing is sealed up (especially bones and strings), and throw everything away in a garbage can that pets can’t access. I absolutely never ever get in the garbage can, but when I do, I sniff out all the best goodies. The garbage after Thanksgiving would be the ultimate prize! But turkey bones and strings can get stuck in the stomach, fatty foods can cause pancreatitis, or even just make our tummies upset.
If your pet has gotten into something they shouldn’t have, here are some symptoms to watch for:
I hope everyone has a great and safe Thanksgiving!
Gus, my brother, hates Halloween. He barks and barks at the small humans like they’re real monsters and gets scared. Silly Gus! I suppose for some animals, this can be a stressful time, so I’ve collaborated with my dog brothers, Gus and Oscar, and my cat sister, Peanut, to come up with tips on how to keep pets safe this Halloween!
Candy can make animals sick.
I love treats. Love them! Mom hands out treats for the small monsters to take in their baskets and bags. They seem very happy, like how I feel when I get a treat. Once, I tried to get into the human treat bowl and Mom loudly called me Brody-No (in front of everyone). She said that those treats are poisonous to me! The chocolate can really hurt me but also the wrappers can get stuck in my belly. Sounds like a trick and not a treat. This bowl should be kept somewhere safe and away from pets. If it were easy to reach, I don’t know if I could help myself!
Keep skittish animals confined and away from the door.
For most pets, it’s a good idea to keep them away from the door while handing out treats, and best to keep the pets home on Halloween instead of walking around in the neighborhood. A lot of pets get scared of all the disguises and bark, bite, or run away. I’m a T.D.S.D. (Therapy Dog Show Dog), so I’m an exception. I love being the exception. Proud!
Keep cats (especially black cats) indoors.
Keep cats inside a few days before, during, and a few days after Halloween, just to be safe! Sometimes mean humans will play tricks on animals in the neighborhood, especially black cats. I’m not sure why, but some people mistakenly think black cats are bad luck and will hurt them! My cat sister, Peanut, is a black cat, and she is the luckiest cat I know. I mean, she lives with me, doesn’t she?
Be careful with candles.
Around this time of year, Mom likes to put little fires around the house. Not the outside big kind but the small smelly kind. Mom seems to like them, but to me, they are just weird! These small fires should be kept in high places where they’re out of the way of wagging dog tails and passive aggressive cat behavior, like knocking things off of tables and shelves for no apparent reason. I will need to discuss this further with Peanut to get to the bottom of it...
Supervise pets in costumes.
Since I’m Good-Boy-Brody, I love everything. I don’t even mind wearing outfits! Mom likes to put me in a simple Halloween costume to be “so cute.” Sometimes, I see animals wearing really elaborate or ill-fitting costumes. What a stress! Only animals that like wearing things should wear one, and they should always be supervised just in case they decide to eat part of it or have trouble walking or breathing.
Know the signs of food poisoning.
If your pet is vomiting, has diarrhea, fever, rapid heartbeat, or shortness of breath, they might have eaten a bad thing! Make sure to call your veterinarian for a their opinion. Treating early is the safest and cheapest way to help a pet that may have been too tempted by the candy bowl.
Do your pets wear costumes? Do you have any funny Halloween pet stories? Let me know in the comments!
Good-Boy-Brody, T.D.S.D. (Therapy Dog Show Dog), a qualified expert, offers pet care tips from a canine perspective.