Christmas Tree Day

dog-with-lights-garland-by-dj-leinChristmas Tree Decorating Day can be very hectic- I know mine sure is! There’s christmas cookies and hot cocoa being munched as the tree is assembled (even live trees need assembling to screw them in right!) and a lot of times the dog is either underfoot or completely ignored.  This year, try these ideas for keeping your dog under control, and in the family.

  • If your dog is the fetch and carry type, let him/her fetch and carry things he CAN fetch and carry. Non-glass ornaments, a roll of garland- anything you think he’ll carry for you, let him!
  • If they aren’t really all about carrying,  work on your dogs’ ‘heel’ and ‘wait’.  If he’s underfoot, set him on his bed with a bone for company until things settle down a little, but keep your dog occupied and with you as much as you can.  You’ll enjoy the day more, and so will he!
  • If your dog simply gets too excited, try distracting him with a dog I.Q. hidden treat interactive game while you work!   Affordable Agility has 4 different games to choose from, with varying degrees of difficulty.  Dogs love to work for their food, and this is a great way of keeping him fed, occupied, and busy while you are decorating.
  • Don’t forget to take ‘play’ breaks for all of you, and go for a walk in the snow after the tree is up.  See if you can see your tree through the window.  Remember that it’s not how beautifully your tree is decorated, it’s how much you enjoyed making it pretty and how you spent time with your family doing so.

Now that the house is decorated- let’s go outside to your agility course, which I’m sure your neighbors love!  Take all the extra lights and garland with you, you’ll need it!

  • A fun idea is to wrap your jumps in lights and have a light-up agility course
  • If electricity isn’t something you want on your course, then wrap your jumps in pretty garland
  • Don’t forget your wings!  Use small Christmas trees as wings for your obstacles, and decorate them as you like.
  • Have your santa and sleigh go up the side (or under) the dogwalk.  That’s not something you see every day!!!
  • If you don’t have too much snow, and do light up your course, try a ‘night run with your dog with the christmas lights on the course.
  • Intersperse your jumps with non-contact obstacles such as light-up deer and blow-up snowmen!

After you’re done decorating indoors and out, run a course with your dog!  You both deserve to relax and have some fun now.