Protecting Christmas Trees from Dogs

Creativity is required
By Karen B. London PhD, December 2017

There are so many little ways that having pets around the holiday season complicates things. For anyone who puts up a Christmas tree, this is old news because dogs (and cats) don’t always recognize that the tree is supposed to be off limits to them. Keeping a fully-decorated tree safe from our dogs requires some ingenuity, as you can see in this video. (There are many cat-related part of this video, but many of them could apply to certain dogs as well.)

The location of trees, how they are decorated, their size, and the barriers around them are all ways to make sure that dogs are not interacting with them in ways that they shouldn’t. Putting a pair of vacuum cleaners next to a tree it is my favorite solution. Though I dislike the idea of making a dog afraid, the fact that many dogs actively avoid vacuum cleaners makes this solution useful to so many people.

If you have a Christmas tree, how have you prevented your dog from messing with it?

Karen B. London, PhD, is a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist and Certified Professional Dog Trainer who specializes in working with dogs with serious behavioral problems, including aggression. She is the author of five books on canine training and behavior.