10 festive dangers that could mean death for your dog

dog allergies to food

Furry friends up and down the country are rubbing their paws together with glee for Christmas – and for good reason! Our cuddly companions can expect to be showered with gifts from their loving families with research revealing owners spend an average of £19.98 on their pets, compared to just £14.78 on their mates. However, despite the pampering, there is a concerning number of festive dangers that could mean death for your dog if you take your eye off the ball.

Here are the top 10, according to advice from pet emergency service Vets Now; because forewarned is forearmed!

1.Cooked bones

While most dogs can safely enjoy gnawing on a raw bone, the problem comes when well-meaning owners mistakenly offer cooked bones from their Christmas meal. This is because the cooking process causes bone to become brittle, meaning they could easily splinter and pierce or get stuck in your dog’s digestive tract.


The dangerous ingredient encased in that creamy Christmas chocolate is the stimulant theobromine, which is toxic to dogs. Allowing Fido come within reach of the family-sized selection box could result in vomiting, hyperactivity or even seizures if they overdose.

3.Macadamia nuts

A Christmas favourite, but no treat for dogs, macadamia nuts can cause muscle tremors, vomiting and hyperthermia within 12 hours of ingestion.


This sneaky ingredient works its way into all manner of dishes on the Christmas table and can cause digestive issues, red blood cell damage and anaemia. So, beware feeding the pooch your leftover Christmas dinner!

5.Artificial sweeteners

Watch out for xylitol, an ingredient found in foods such as gum and cakes. It can cause acute liver disease, blood clotting and potentially fatal hypoglycaemia.

6.Christmas pudding and mince pies

You might not want doggo to miss out on dessert, but grapes, raisins, currants and sultanas are poisonous to dogs. So keep that Christmas pudding well out of reach!

7.Christmas decorations

Some dogs will sink their teeth into anything. Glass baubles look awfully like toys and can easily shatter, tinsel can cause obstructions in the digestive system and salt dough ornaments can cause potentially fatal salt toxicosis. Choose pet-friendly decorations, hang out of reach and ensure your pet is never left unsupervised around the Christmas tree.

8.Mouldy foods

Keep your dog away from the rubbish bins this Christmas as mouldy human food such as bread, dairy produce and nuts are particularly toxic to our canine companions.


In the madness of the Christmas Day gift exchange, batteries for shiny new toys can easily go amiss or spares be left discarded on the floor. Dogs ingesting batteries is a common Christmas complaint and can easily result in metal poisoning or nasty chemical burns.

10.Children’s toys

Children’s toys can be very appealing to dogs and may not be designed to withstand strong teeth and a curious disposition. Remove any choking hazards and closely monitor the opening of children’s gifts.

A dog is for life, not just for Christmas, and your loyal pal deserves the best veterinary care should any harm come their way. We specialise in pet insurance policies with expert advisors on hand to deal with claims quickly. So, if your dog needs emergency medical treatment, you can take financial worries out of the equation.





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