Christmas is an exciting time, but for pets it can bring about a few new dangers and worries. For starters, we plonk a huge tree in the middle of the living room and cover it in lights and shiny stuff, which for a dog this must be a rather strange occurrence!
Not only can this new and strange object unsettle a dog, if you’re opting for a real Christmas tree this year, there’s something else you should consider.
Veterinary physiotherapist, Tilly Wild, says that if your tree is real, the water reservoir inside the tree stand can harbour dangerously high levels of bacteria, pesticides and fertilisers, as many Christmas trees are treated with these chemicals prior to being bought. These can be very dangerous to pets if ingested, so Tilly suggests covering the tree stand with aluminium foil to keep curious snouts safely out of harm’s way. Who knew a roll of tin foil could save your dog’s life this Christmas?
Any dog owner will know just how much dogs love to drink puddle water, and the reservoir of water in your tree stand will seem equally enticing to them, so as well as using the Christmas tree foil hack, you could also use a tree skirt to further block access to the tree water from inquisitive four-legged family members.
Tilly has teamed up with Matalan this festive season to share even more tips on keeping your pets safe this Christmas. As well as her Christmas tree foil hack, she has some other Christmas tree-related tips: ‘Whether it be real or fake, a tree indoors is likely to be a strange sight for your dog. Chances are they will come for a sniff around, so ensure that your tree is securely anchored to decrease the risk of it being knocked over and causing an injury and/or a big mess.’
Tilly added: ‘Also, make sure you hoover up regularly to minimise your dog’s ability to ingest any pine needles or getting them stuck in their paws. Whilst pine is not toxic to dogs, ingesting too much could cause irritation to the digestive system, and needles can be sharp.’