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AKC® Appears on NBC's Today Show to Offer Safety Tips and Remind Dog Lovers that Puppies are Not Stocking Stuffers

The hectic holiday season can be difficult for many people, but it can also be a stressful time for your furry, four-footed companion. AKC Spokesperson Lisa Peterson appeared on NBC's Today Show to remind pet owners that the season's festivities can be both enjoyable and safe for your pet as long as you keep your canine's health and well-being in mind.

Peterson offered the following tips:

  • Daily routines change during the holidays, but try to maintain a feeding and walking schedule as close to your dog's normal routine as possible

  • Keep your driveway clean. Anti-freeze is attractive but lethal to pets. Ice-melting chemicals and salt are harmful to your dog's paws

  • Avoid feeding your dog table scraps and sweets

  • Avoid decorating with popcorn or cranberry strands, tinsel and glass ornaments and keep small decorations out of your dog's reach

  • Consider using an artificial tree. Tree water and pine needles are harmful to dogs. Other holiday plants which are toxic to dogs are poinsettias, holly and mistletoe


Peterson also reminded dog lovers that while a cute, cuddly puppy may be tops on many Christmas lists this year, and it's tempting to grant your child's holiday wish, it is not the ideal time for new puppy ownership.

“Wait until after the holidays, when schedules return to normal, to add that new puppy to your family,” said Peterson. “Teach kids about responsible dog ownership as they prepare for the real thing. Take time to research the breed that best suits your family's lifestyle, talk to your children about what dog ownership involves, and then begin your search for a responsible breeder.”

More holiday canine safety tips