Buying Gifts for a Dog Lover? What Not to Put Under the Tree

The kids coming downstairs Christmas morning to find a puppy in a big, red bow. The idea is sweet—but it's one that's best left to Hallmark commercials. 

Getting a dog is a serious decision and is a commitment of about 10 years or more. Selecting a dog that is the best fit for the recipient's lifestyle and personality is important in ensuring the best match. 

Any prospective owner should always carefully consider their schedule and circumstances before bringing a new pet into their home. This is especially true during the holidays when parties, travel, or out-of-town visitors might adversely affect your ability to give a new puppy all the attention he deserves. If your holidays will be hectic, wait until after the hustle and bustle.

Instead, consider wrapping pet accessories, like a leash or bowl to symbolize the gift of a puppy to come—this will give the recipient time to do their research and prepare for the commitment. 

Already have a new puppy in the home? Here are tips to make sure his first Christmas is a safe one:

If you have a real Christmas tree, make sure your dog doesn’t swallow the pine needles or drink the tree water which can cause stomach irritation, or contain poisonous plant food.  Try putting a gate around the tree to keep your dog away, or consider getting an artificial tree.

Puppies like to chew and explore, and exposed wires from holiday lights pose a threat to your curious little friend– if he chews on them, he could be electrocuted.  Tape indoor wires to the wall and outdoor wires to the side of the house where your dog can’t reach them.

Be careful with candles around your house, as a wagging tail can knock them over and cause serious burns or even start a house fire.