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My Dog & I: Holly, Jolly.

Every year it gets harder to say something seasonal about Your Xmas Holiday with dogs…

I think I have told you all so many times not to get a Xmas puppy, not to feed your dogs rich food, not to put them in the basement when you have a houseful of family members…

Xmas puppies are joyful. Eating rich food is part of the holidays!

I think I am now going to say that I have changed my mind…

 

Xmas puppies are joyful. Eating rich food is part of the holidays and perhaps the basement is blissfully quiet while several underage rugrats terrorize the house!!!

I am tired of being the Grinch who spoils everyone’s Xmas fantasy and I am going to sit back and watch you all have a ton of fun unwrapping dog toys and finding Xmas outfits to dress your pups in!!

My dogs have been allowed to forget their manners…

Do you know why? Because…I have done all of these things and much worse.

Yes, I have purchased a Xmas puppy, dressed my poor dogs up for Xmas photos, and relegated them to the other room while the house is full of visitors. My dogs have been allowed to forget their manners and rip up cardboard boxes, their routines have been disrupted and I have been known to slip a piece of highly spiced turkey under the table to a shocked Boykin Spaniel.

Holidays mean more time for hiking, playing ball and interactions with our dogs.

We have all stayed up late and slept in…and sometimes even fallen asleep in front of a Xmas movie on the couch…all together!! There are, however…a few things that we all like to do that are good for everyone.

Holidays mean more time for hiking, playing ball and interactions with our dogs. They don’t really care if you are not doing totally dog-related things…Just hanging out with the fam is a treat for a dog that spends a lot of time waiting for Mom and Dad to come home.

Of course, all that rich food might cause an accident here and there…

A new toy means a human will probably play with them and a new collar or leash means “We are going for a walk!” New dog bowls mean fresh food and the ringing of the doorbell means “COMPANY!!”

Of course, all that rich food might cause an accident here and there, too much attention may wind up the stimulation level to hysteria and all those tempting boxes might contain something fabulous and expensive so be aware that your dog has no concept of how much something is worth…

But…it’s Xmas so we are all able to be much more generous and jovial when the odd item is inappropriately tortured by your Xmas puppy. Personally, I love Xmas these days. We live on a quiet mountain with a chunk of land to keep dogs on and we are not terribly houseproud…(Dog Trainers don’t have nice things). The odd hole in the lawn or mangled Xmas ornament is par for the course and we no longer house Holiday Dogs…I get to watch Balto many times without criticism and I can go wander with my crew all over the countryside without worrying that I am missing an appointment…

We now live in a state where snowfall is pretty and mostly temporary…

We have finally succumbed to a Fake Xmas Tree after years of cleaning up pine needles before the pups could eat them and rubbing peanut butter into curly coats to remove pine pitch! We now live in a state where snowfall is pretty and mostly temporary instead of a four-month-long slog through sleet, freezing rain, and three feet of snow to get firewood.

People here tend to include their dogs in the festivities in spite of my dire warnings and I see more and more of my students out in Lowes, shopping for blow-up Santas. All in all, it’s going to be a great holiday folks and I can’t even wait to see all those Xmas puppies in March!!

Happy Xmas Pudding and Boxing Day and see you all at the Shanghai Parade on January 1 in downtown Lewisburg!!!

– Janine Lazarus, HashtagWV #138. (Dec-Jan 2022). For more dog training tips, follow Janine at Goodladd.net and on facebook @goodladddogtraining

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