The festive season has rolled around quicker than a dog with a case of the zoomies. Yet, the question on Santa Paws’ lips is…Has your dog been naughty or nice this year?
Whether our pups are on the good list or bad list, they will always be the apple of our eyes. However, with the frenetic energy that the holiday season stirs up, it is easy for our fur babies to lose their chill too. After all, all our puppies see is their favorite hooman spending time on things that are not them. So, to ensure that there is plenty of festive cheer in the air, discover our top tips for making the holiday season fun for yourpampered pooch.
1. Turn their crate into Santa's Grotto
When whisking your fur-baby off to Lapland to visit Santa may be out of budget for most (if not all) pawrents, you can recreate the magic at home. As you start decorating your home for the season, think about their little home too. Acknowledge their important role in the Christmas celebrations and turn their crate into Santa's Grotto. Swap their ordinary bedding for something a little more festive and add in a stuffed toy of one of Santa Paws’ reindeers for company. You can even go full-on-Christmas-crazy and add a small Christmas tree next to their crate. Place their presents here or if space is an issue, opt for a stocking. Of course, no Christmas crash-pad is complete without a “Santa Paws please stop here sign'' - bonus points if it has been signed with your puppy's paw print. Ready for the big reveal? Unveil your winter wonderland creation with a Christmas party dedicated to them - complete with a yappy hour and a barkuterie board of their favorite seasonal treats.
2. Bake them tasty Christmas treats
Talking of treats, another way to include your canine BFF in your plans is to bake them delicious treats. Home Baked Christmas treats are very fun to make and even better to eat. Use the holiday leftovers (minus the onions) and make delicious doggie treats - turkey cookies on repeat please. If you know you will be stuck for time but want to make your fur baby feel part of the celebrations, make a few batches of cookies in advance and freeze them, ready to defrost when needed. These also make great gifts for when you have festive puppy playdates. Just remember that with so many new smells in the house, some curious pups might lick or eat things that they shouldn’t… and definitely don’t leave the turkey cooling unattended.
3. Use your free time to spend time with your 4-legged BFF
What better gift to give your dog this year than spending good, old-fashioned quality time together. Stash your phone in a draw, cancel your plans and take your canine significant other on a date. Christmas can be such a magical time, being home with your family (pups included!), baking, and having all the time in the world to do fun things. First thing on the holiday season check-list is finding a Christmas tree. Include your pups in this wonderful experience and let them pick their favorite one. Just be careful not to let them think they can pee on each tree they find. Christmas markets are also fun outings and a fantastic way to make other doggy BFFs. Once it gets dark, go out and look at the Christmas lights on a walk around the neighborhood, it’s definitely one of the things that makes this time of the year feel exceptional. And to top it off, wouldn’t it be so amazing for your fur-baby to meet Santa? After all, every human child gets to do it, our puppies deserve that honor too.
4. Create the most festive Christmas cards
Regardless of if this is your puppy’s first Christmas or their sixth, being part of the family Christmas card is a must. Yet, how fun would it be if they got their own personal photoshoot? Let their curiosity for the season shine and let them explore the array of holiday costumes. Dress them up, grab a camera and create a festive photoshoot. Choose safe costumes that won’t make them uncomfortable, and prepare for a cuteness overload. Once the costume is selected, choose a background that will fit the vibe you’re looking for. Snap away until you feel like you have the winning shot and then put your creative skills to the test and print some cards using your chosen photo. Finally, share these very special Christmas cards with all your friends and family, and inspire other pawrents to do the same. Let's have a Christmas full of dog cards!
5. Keep your dog's routine in place
As boring as it may sound, dogs are creatures of habit. While on howliday season, keep their routine as much as possible - eat, sleep, wag, repeat. Take them out on their walks at the usual time, admire the lights together and give them all the attention they deserve. During this season we spend more time at home, so it is the perfect time to lie down on the couch with our canine companions. Binge watch howliday shows, or have a howliday movie marathon, our pups will surely enjoy spending so much time with us. A big part of the Christmas season is visiting friends and family or being the host when they come to visit, this can be very fun or very stressful. In an effort to keep our pups’ environment peaceful, it’s good that they have space to retreat when they’re overwhelmed, especially when we have people over. Crates are fabulous for this. Still, leave some toys out to keep them mentally stimulated. Now, if they do feel like meeting all these new people, games that involve them are the best option. A simple hide and seek game, or an intricate doggie-treat treasure hunt, will be an extraordinary experience for them, they will have lots of fun participating in all the things that we do.