An Orchards Vet Explains Christmas Dangers to Dogs

Christmas Dangers to Dogs

When Christmas rolls around, it’s important for all dog owners to remember the holiday can pose dangers to their canine companion.

The Christmas Tree

Dogs may chew the wires from the lights which can cause electrocution or shock. If you use preservatives in your tree’s water, your dog may be drawn to drink it due to the sugar. The preservatives can cause an upset stomach.

Turkey Bones

While it’s okay to give your dog a few bites of skinless turkey, it’s not okay to give him the bones. They can splinter causing internal organs to puncture.


Ribbons, string, or yarn may cause intestinal obstruction or bunching of the intestine along the string’s length. Both of these conditions require surgery.


Don’t leave lit candles unattended as your dog may knock them over causing injury to the animal or property damage.

Holiday Plants

Holly can cause intense vomiting as can mistletoe (this can also cause breathing problems and erratic behavior), while poinsettias can cause vomiting and mouth irritation.

Unbaked Dough

If a dog ingests unbaked dough, it can expand in his stomach causing it to twist. Another danger can come from the yeast which will convert to alcohol in his stomach. It will quickly absorb into the bloodstream likely causing alcohol poisoning.


Remember to keep chocolate out of your dog’s reach. It can cause seizures, vomiting, muscle tremors, and an irregular heartbeat.

For more tips on how to keep you dog safe during the holidays, or to schedule an appointment with a veterinarian, please contact us. We’re open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and provide both emergency and general care for all small animals.