dog with Christmas lights

The holidays are exciting and joyful for people but can be hazardous for our dogs. A little planning in advance can prevent an emergency trip to the veterinary clinic this holiday season. Many of the decorations and foods we associate with this time of year pose a threat to our dogs.


Chocolate toxicity is based on the type of chocolate, size of the dog and the amount consumed. Chocolate treats abound at Christmas, chocolate coins and santas, baking morsels, chocolate covered nuts and fruit.

Other sweets and baked goods which may be too rich or contain raisins have the potential to cause digestive problems or worse.


Alcohol should be kept out of your dogs reach. And it is not just guests drinks but desserts like rum cake. Unbaked yeast dough poses a serious threat of painful gas and bloating due to the stomach metabolizing the yeast into ethanol and carbon dioxide. Either of which can be deadly.

The artificial sweetener Xylitol is showing up in many sugar free candies, gum, recipes and peanut butter. It has been linked to seizures, liver failure and death in dogs.

Turkey and turkey skin as well as many other table scrapes can cause pancreatitis.
Cooked turkey or chicken bones can splinter and damage the intestinal tract.


Some plants associated with the holiday season are known to cause severe gastrointestinal disorders, breathing difficulty or in extreme cases heart failure in dogs. Keep the mistletoe, holly, amaryllis, and poinsettia out of the reach of dogs.
Keep dogs out of the Christmas tree water.


Candles can be dangerous for various reasons. Open flames pose a threat of fire if knocked over by dogs. Some dogs will be tempted to sample scented candles.
Tinsel and ornaments can cause stomach and intestinal problems if chewed up.
Electrical cords need to be protected.
Liquid potpourri contains cationic detergent which causes difficulty in breathing and liver damage.

The holidays often mean more visitors and parties. It can be overwhelming for some dogs so be sure to have a quiet place your dog can go to get away from the hubbub.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here