12 tips to get your dog ready for Christmas

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Among her circle of friends (human only…we’ll explain this shortly), Akira is known as quite the diva. Not in the sense that she’s high maintenance or anything but she has a style of how and when she likes to hang out.

In the run up to Christmas, Akira and I are working with Pedigree to bring you this guide on doggie care and maintenance, not just for the holidays but relevant to all year round! Read on to find our tips…

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The great thing about Shiba Inus is that their coats are self-cleaning. Not kidding…we often take her out for walks where she gets a little mucky but by the time we’re home she’s gleaming! That bodes the question…how often should you wash your dog?

Akira gets a bath every couple of weeks, believe me, it’s not easy since she’s petrified of water so the key to a calm Shiba Inu bath is to have plenty of treats and have a positive experience. When looking for dog grooming options (check out Pedigree’s site for a detailed and expert guide) and dog groomers near me are my first port of call as well as local pet shops and recommendations from my vet.

Pay attention to your dog’s personality

She’ll be the first to tell you she’s a difficult character. Don’t get me wrong she’s wonderful with humans, loves kids. Dogs on the other hand…not her cup of tea. A few years ago she was sadly bit on the face by a Husky and has never quite recovered. Akira suffers from dog aggression anxiety and so gets defensively aggressive near other dogs.

For this reason we have to limit her interactions with other pups. We learned the hard way, but don’t try to force a behaviour from your dog, it just stresses them out even more so see an expert dog trainer for training and advice on tough situations.

How to choose the right food for your dog

There are SO many options to choose from when it comes to the right food for your dog. Home made dog food is a great option, may in cases be more expensive but you know exactly what your pup is getting.

Akira is on dry food that was recommended by her vet and it’s served her well. Her coat is super shiny, she has a healthy digestive system and great teeth!

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How many treats should I give my dog?

Don’t over do it! Something I tell my mum everyday since she treats Akira like she’s the baby child of the family. Read the packages of treats as they’ll give you an indication on how much to go. My biggest piece of advice is to always ensure you make your dog work for their treats by completing a task/trick for you.

Secondly, if you’re ever going to give your dog human food NEVER treat from your dinner table. Wait until the end of dinner and pop the food in their dog bowl so they don’t end up begging. This is a good tip if you’re looking for advice on how to stop your dog from begging at the dinner table.

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How much exercise should my dog get?

Puppies will need three or even four walks a day when potty training. Different dog breeds can vary. Akira likes 45 mins twice a day but every Saturday or Sunday gets a hike in the woods or farms. These are also my favourite types and days of exercise 🙂

Products for Dog Grooming

Akira uses Kiehl’s Since 1851 as her brand of choice (just like me!). The Cuddly Coat Dog Shampoo and Conditioner on her coat work a DREAM. Not currently available in the UK but watch this space…

Dental care for your dog

Just remember, when eating a lot of wet or home-made food you’ll need to make sure you’re brushing your dog’s teeth often…I give her the Pedigree dental sticks on a regular basis to help with the cleaning process.

How often should I take my dog to the vet?

Puppies will need to go regularly for their vaccinations but once your pup reaches a year old you can make them yearly visits (unless something is wrong of course – then head to the vet immediately). As your dog becomes more senior make your vet visits twice a year.

Training classes for dogs

Puppy training is fantastic for the early years of your dog’s life – they’re also really great for socialising your dog regularly (so they don’t end up as anxious as Kieks). Dog training doesn’t end there though. If you’re having behaviour trouble with your pup look for some dog training classes near you!

Safety measure to take at Christmas for your dog

It’s easy to get distracted when you’re running around looking after the turkey and trimmings but make sure there are no hazards in the area for your pup! The biggest rule is to keep all the boxes of chocolate away from them! Dark chocolate is poisonous to dogs and I’ve heard a horror story or two about little one eating entire boxes.

It’s also good to be aware of loose wrapping, ribbons or glass baubles in case they think they’re toys to play with.

Christmas dinner for your dog?

Akira has dry food year round but once a year she gets a WHOLE bowl of wet food as a treat for Christmas dinner. If we can indulge why cant she?

Christmas present ideas for dogs

Every year (no lie) Akira receives the Christmas Pedigree tin of assorted treats. She now even recognises the yellow tin before we open it! She also gets a stocking filled with toys such as balls, chew toys and ropes. Mum often gets a little too excited and also gets her a new bed and blanket…

This post is a collaboration with Pedigree, but all thoughts are my own. For additional dental care information you can read the following Pedigree Reviews article for tips and advice.

uk.pedigree.com/caring/my-dogs-dental-care

 

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