Dogs

5 tips how to keep dogs away from Christmas trees

Dogs and Christmas trees are a popular photography combination, but sometimes the tree becomes the victim of dog mischief. Do you have a dog who loves to chew on your Christmas tree? If so, you’re not alone. Many pet owners find themselves dealing with this issue during the holiday season. Thankfully, when it comes to how to keep dogs away from Christmas trees, there are a few things you can try.

Dogs are a big part of the Christmas celebrations for many people. They bring joy and happiness to the holiday season and are often considered part of the family.

But with all the excitement and chaos that comes with Christmas, it’s really important to keep your dog safe. I have a guide on how to keep your dog safe during Christmas, I’ll be happy if you check it out ☺️

And now here are 5 tips on how to keep dogs away from the Christmas trees and avoid any accidents. I hope they will help you enjoy nice and quiet holidays 😊


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While I am a veterinarian, this article is not intended to replace professional veterinary advice. If you have any medical concerns about your pet, consult your vet immediately. Always seek professional assistance if you are unsure of your pet’s health.


french bulldog puppy with Christams presents
Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash

#1 Consider buying an artificial Christmas tree

I feel like every year people around me get divided into 2 battle camps – “real tree people” vs. “artificial tree people”. I have to say both groups have some valid points. 

However, if you are a pet owner whose dog loves chewing on sticks, twigs, or branches, you might need to consider buying an artificial Christmas tree. The nice smell of pines and wood can be a big trigger for your dog.

On top of that, he might not understand why he is allowed to collect his sticks and branches outside but this nice indoor tree is suddenly a no-no.

#2 Use pet deterrents

I read somewhere that you could put hot chilly sauce or Pfeffer spray around your tree base if you don’t know how to keep dogs away from Christmas trees. While I understand where the idea comes from, I wouldn’t do that to my dog. Strong smells (and chilly taste) can be really painful and I think it’s just not ok to do something like this to an animal with an extremely sensitive nose. 

What you can do is use a certified pet deterrent. They usually taste very bitter and dogs need just one lick to stay away. There are several on the market, you can do your own research and decide which one is best suited to your needs.

#3 Use baby gates or exercise pens to keep your dog away from the Christmas tree

You can use baby gates, exercise pens, or big boxes to keep your dog away. So basically fortify your Christmas tree. This might not sound like an aesthetically pleasing idea, but sometimes it’s the only thing you can do to avoid a trip to a veterinary hospital because your dog ate your Christmas ornaments. 

Ornaments, decorations, sticks, and twigs are serious choking hazards for dogs.

You can also use the baby gate to lock your dog out of the room where the Christmas tree is. 

#4 Train your dog in advance using positive reinforcement

This is one of the best tips on how to keep dogs away from Christmas trees. It works with puppies as well as adult dogs, you just need to be willing to work with your pup and have enough patience.

Dogs are very intelligent animals and can learn quickly. With the help of food rewards, you can teach your dog to stay away from the Christmas tree. 

Start by placing your dog in a sit or down position a few feet away from the tree. If he stays put, give him a treat. If he gets up and starts to approach the tree, say “No” in a firm voice and move him back to his original spot. Repeat this process until your dog can stay in place even when he’s close to the tree.

Find a few minutes every day to practice, your dog will soon love this new “game” ☺️ Not to mention it’s a strong bonding opportunity.

And if nothing works, try this FREE workshop 🙂 👇

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#5 Avoid edible decorations

Dogs have an excellent smell, we all know that. What people often forget is that if they put something that is smelling soo nice on their tree, it can be very hard for your pet to resist. 

Chocolate decorations, popcorn garlands, and other yummy things are a great temptation for your pup.

The problem is not just that your dog will be trying to get to them all the time, but also that chocolate is toxic to pets. Already small amounts of dark chocolate can cause great health problems. Here is more about why is chocolate bad for your dog and what to do if he eats some (hint: call your vet, as chocolate can really be deadly to dogs).

And did you know that different types of chocolate have different impacts on your pet?

So if you must have edible decorations on your tree, be sure to keep them out of reach of your furry friend.

how to keep dogs away from christmas trees

Bonus tip – secure your Christmas tree

The ornaments and lights on the tree can be dangerous if chewed on or ingested, and the branches can also prove hazardous if your dog jumps up at your tree. Make sure your tree is secured so your dog can’t knock it over.

You can use a really heavy base or weigh down the one you have. You can also get a specially designed Christmas tree stand that has a built-in restraint system to keep your tree from toppling over.

Be consistent with your rules and make sure everyone in the household is on the same page about keeping dogs away from the tree. Dogs are very smart and will quickly learn that they are not allowed to go near the tree if they see that everyone is consistent with the rules.

With some patience and training, you can easily teach your dog to stay away from the Christmas tree and enjoy the holiday season stress-free! 🎄🎁

I hope with these tips you will be able to keep your dog away from the Christmas tree and avoid any accidents. ❤️

👉 To keep your pup safe during the Christmas holidays, read this Christmas safety guide ☺️

merry christmas from vetcarenews

PS: If you are as crazy about animals as I am and want to get more pet health tips, subscribe to my newsletter! Today you will get a free pet planner as a bonus ðŸ¤—

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