• Hahnbee Choi, Cert. CN

Holiday Survival Guide

Updated: Dec 18, 2021

With the upcoming holiday season, there are so many things to look forward to: friends and family, presents, delicious food, and so much more. But there are certain things that we as responsible pet owners have to be cautious of. Here are some quick holiday tips for pulling you through this season.

#1: Holiday Themed Treats

Pumpkin and turkey-shaped dog treats look like scrumptious snacks for your dog to enjoy. But it's better to skip the carbo-load and go for something less processed. Many cute holiday-themed snacks for dogs contain ingredients you try to avoid in fresh food diets.

Whole wheat flour, sugar, food dye, and more... Think twice before reaching for what would cause the holiday weight and make some DIY dehydrated treats instead! Going for a single ingredient chew or DIY treats is an easy swap that your pup will for sure enjoy.

#2 Rawhides

Dogs chew. Whether they're puppies or full-grown, they chew. Because when they chew, endorphins are released, which reduces stress and stimulates the brain. But, make sure to give them the proper and nutritious chew to chomp on.

Rawhides are bleached, processed, chemically preserved, and poorly sourced ingredients. It undergoes a very extreme chemical process and has many dyes added to it to achieve a desired decorative look. When dogs consume rawhides, it is hardly digestible and close to giving glue to your dog, therefore, creating a severe blockage risk. Rodney Habib created a video showing what goes into them.

Rather than giving your pet a processed, bleached, preserved "treat," switch it out for a single ingredient chew. Either by making your own or feeding a more appropriate chew.

Suggested Chews:

*Dehydrated trachea

*Bully Stick


*Raw Duck Feet

*Raw Poultry Necks (skin/fat removed)

*Himalayan Dog Chew

*Dehydrated Lamb/Cow Ears

Cute, but deadly...

#3 Sweets

Keep an eye out for candy lying around! But be extra careful of all the chocolate and gum. The sugar-free chocolate and gum contain xylitol, which is highly toxic to dogs. Unlike chocolate, where it can take up to a whole pound, xylitol is toxic at 0.1 g/kg. Three pieces of gum could send a dog into hypoglycemia, liver failure, seizures, and sometimes even death.

It's better to be safe than sorry after this spooky season and keep all sweets off the ground and away from the dogs. If your dog encounters something toxic that they shouldn't have, contact the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center: (888) 426-4435 and your local emergency vet immediately.

#4 Cooked Bones

Cooked/smoked bones are not recommended. They can splinter into shards and be a severe choking hazard. They also can cause serious damage to the mouth, throat, and intestine. Cooked bones are also depleted of many essential nutrients and don't provide your dog with much nutritional value.

It's better to skip the cooked bones and go for a more appropriate chew listed above so you can give your dog that is safe and nutritional.

#5 Crowds

With the holidays coming around, that means visitors, guests, and craziness! If your dog gets nervous about a hectic situation, loud noises, or crowds, you may want to reserve a quiet space for your dog to resort to while you enjoy the holiday spirit. If needed, you can set up a kennel for your dog to retreat to. If your dog doesn't kennel, you can dog-proof a back room and give them a safe chew or toys to keep them occupied.

With these top Holiday Survival Tips, it's time to share a wonderful holiday season that you and your dog can enjoy. I hope you learned something new today & Always Keep Exploring!