I don’t know about you, but I find the lead up to Christmas the busiest time of the year! So many social events plus the manic rush getting work sorted before the holidays means time really flies and other things don’t get done. This year I want to ensure my pup Archie and furry buddy Bernard are well and truly involved in Christmas cheer!
I’ve put together some gift tips and ideas for you, and also on a serious note a couple of hazards to be aware of…
A Brief Warning – Foodstuffs
It’s so easy at Christmas to feed your pets little treats they’re not used to. Please please please consider what you feed them, as foodstuffs that’re fine for us can be poisonous for them. The last thing you want is a poorly dog at Christmas. Here’s a quick list of no no foods common at Christmas time:
Alcohol, coffee, chocolate (especially dark chocolate), lollies and other sweets, cherries, apricots, grapes, raisins, peaches, onions, salt, garlic, walnuts, yeast… and more.
I’d say, always think before you give your furbaby any unusual foods. Some cooked foods or Christmas puddings will likely contain some of the ingredients listed above. Dogs and cats are not the same as us, and they don’t need to pig out at Christmas. Decent treats or a chicken neck will be just as exciting for them, and much much more healthy!
There’s a more extensive list here.
Toys are a great gift! Dogs love to play, and they love interactivity with their 2-legged parents. It’s not just the toy itself, it’s the attention they get when you play with them. A tennis ball to replace a tatty old one may not seem like much to you, but it is for them!
If your dog likes his teddy’s, the PETStock Assist Christmas Charity Dog (available here from PETstock) is a great way to give your dog a gift and help other pets in need at the same time! You don’t get more Christmassy than that!
My puppy Archie’s had a whole load of toys over the past year, but interestingly the one he’s had most enjoyment from is the Kazoo Rubber Sling Ball (on offer at My Pet Warehouse for $8.24)
Cats love their toys too!
If you have a kitten or younger cat, I’ve found the mouse on a string a great interactive toy. PETstock currently have them on sale for a bargain $2.50 (available here).
Or how about some KONG catnip (available here)!?
So many treats you find in supermarkets are appalling if you have a look at the ingredients. Feeding the odd treat won’t do much harm, but at Christmas time it’s easy to overfeed during the celebrations.
Many have asked me about treats over the past year, and these are the best I’ve found:
For cats – The ZiwiPeak Lamb Liver premium barf treats are great for cats (currently on offer at My Pet Warehouse for $9.89).
All these treats are meat/fish based, which is far healthier than the absolute rubbish you find in other products.
How about making your own treats? Human-grade chicken breast cut up into small squares is a healthy natural treat, or a nice fresh chicken neck or human-grade mince from Coles or Woolies? Don’t be fooled by pet mince – it’s usually more expensive than human-grade mince despite being worse quality and full of additives and preservatives.
Novelty Crimble Clothing
Dressing your pooch has become such a novelty these days, especially at Christmas time. I saw a dog dressed in a Santa costume the other day (one of these), which may look adorable but can be very dangerous. It’s a hot time of year folks, and it doesn’t take much time for a dog to overheat.
Here’s a couple of better alternatives, but again you’re doing this for your amusement and not your dog. Your dog doesn’t care for clothing!
Doggy reindeer antlers are a quirky edition and rather humorous. You can buy these on sale at PETstock for $4.89. Just be mindful your dog might pull them off and chew them to bits.
Doggy bow ties I find these adorable and they’re relatively harmless – they won’t cause your dog any discomfort, and the added attention will keep them smiling. Bow ties can be bought on sale from PETstock for $4.89.
Face it, there’s one thing your pets really want at Christmas, and that’s your love. Your attention and cuddles mean the world to them, and those things are free. You don’t get a greater gift than that!
We hope these tips are helpful, and if you have any of you own make sure you comment!!
Happy Christmas from Pet Food Reviews (Australia)!