The holiday season is upon us! The most wonderful time of year is here yet-again, and with it comes the responsibility of keeping our canine friends happy, trim, and well away from human food. It is a pretty common time for all of us to put weight on. The excessive amounts of good food and lack of exercise are sure-fire ways to put on an extra few pounds. The same is true for our pet dogs who commonly get the food scraps, or who scavenge for them when you aren’t looking. Not only can this human food lead to a pretty quick increase in canine body weight and body condition, many human foods are in fact toxic to dogs and can cause anything from an inflamed pancreas, to heart issues or even death! Just a few examples of human foods that are toxic to dogs include coffee, grapes, chocolate, onions and garlic! There is a great list online here that outlines a few more of the human foods that can cause a real issue if your dog eats them: https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control/people-foods-avoid-feeding-your-pets . So – what will I do with Choco to ensure he doesn’t put weight on over the holiday period? There are a few key steps in my mind:
Firstly – I will make sure Choco is only fed his canine dog food and nothing else. Any ‘treats’ he gets will be the same canine diet! I tend to take a few kibbles around in my pocket to give to him as a reward where necessary. Make sure the entire family is on board for this; otherwise Auntie Mavis will end up giving your dog some turkey and stuffing under the table when you aren’t looking!
Secondly – make sure your dog cannot access the food in your pantry or your food waste. Keep the rubbish bin in a place where your dog can’t get to it! Dogs are keen scavengers and there aren’t many bin lids that will keep dogs out! Also be sure that any presents under your tree don’t contain food. Your dog will sniff out your wrapped food gifts and destroy all of your presents if you aren’t careful.
Finally – make sure you use that Heyrex monitor to keep a close eye on your dog’s exercise and activity, and set yourself a goal to increase your dog’s activity a little every day!
Enjoy the lead up to Christmas!
Until next time,
Mark & Choco