Dog's Christmas Guide
Ah the month of December. Ho, Ho, Ho's sound in the air as every corner has some old hairy fat man asking for money, food or both. This group is much more colorful than the usual street folk. And, you are not supposed to bark at them or growl.
This is the month of frivolity, parties and general insanity. The focus is all on the celebration of a holiday called Christmas, Yooooole, and other names. What it all boils down to for dogs is attention and lots of it, food, and more food, and humans running around like the proverbial turkey birdy thing with its head cut off. There are the rare exceptions, but during this time, the emotions of your human swing up and down like a yo-yo.
You get to see a bunch of people you would rather not, and maybe some you are so glad came (if they bring treats and fuss).
Old, experienced dogs should have no trouble weathering the season. However, for those young pups experiencing their first Holiday Season, I have put together this guide. It tells you what to expect as well as some simple dos and don’ts.
1. Humans are always weird, but this takes the biscuit...
Humans always get crazy. This is justly known as the Silly Season.
2. They bring in a what?
Many persons put up a “tree” inside.Yes, really. What is this, Macbeth?
This is not, I repeat NOT, an indoor bathroom. Trees in the house (yes I kid you not). And they'll take a dim view of it if you bark at it, growl at it, sit and gt hypnotized by the lights, steal interesting bits off it, or knock it over. And especially if you lift a leg on it.
3. more odd stuff
With the arrival of the tree – real or artificial, come a few other odd habits. They put on shiny bulbs and some pretty, shiny stuff. The former are various types of Christmas bulbs. Some may remind you of your rubber ball or tennis ball. They are not. They are, in fact, no fun at all. They may “bounce” once, but do not count on them bouncing twice. In fact, some of them, usually the biggest and oldest of them all, shatter on contact with even the gentlest retriever mouth. Avoid them at all cost.
That pretty, shiny stuff on the tree is interesting but NOT for eating. Speaking from experience, the going in is not worth the coming out – especially if it involves a visit to the V-E-T-S.
4. Don't eat the food! It's a trap!
Another quaint custom you may run across has to do with string and that fluffy but crunchy stuff called popcorn. Several humans may sit around with a bowl of the freshly popped stuff and begin to “thread” the needle through it onto a nice long thread. Now, just because the piece of thread dangles and drags onto the floor, you are not supposed to eat the popcorn off the string. This is not a doggy shish kabob. Although, I do admit it is fun to see how long it takes them to figure out why their garland of popcorn is not getting any bigger. The trick is to nibble only a few here and there and to Never, Never, eat the entire lot. Avoid, at all cost, getting caught with the actual string in your mouth. It is a rather unpleasant feel to have it pulled back up out of your throat. Rank amateurs - do not try this at home. To get it just right requires a professional.
5. Don't unwrap presents until the humans start to...
Another custom, sometime after the tree goes up, people get out string, ribbons, bows, tissue paper and lots of tape. They fuss and cut and swear and sweat and “wrap” presents. Now, usually, you will want to help, getting your nose and tail in on the action.
Putting your four paws and nose worth in will not be helpful this time. Furthermore, while some puppies do manage to look cute and adorable wearing a bow, it can be very demoralizing to an older pet.
When the packages are wrapped, your human will often place them under the tree. The sad and simple fact is these colorful packages are not all yours. Do not shake, rattle roll, mutilate or tear, even is your people do so.
6. Beware of the ridiculous
Now some people go all out for the holidays. They purchase or have given to them or even RENT Santa Claus, Mrs. or Miss Claus and Elf outfits. Now if humans want to look ridiculous, frankly, it is the norm. Yet, are they happy only inflicting their “Holiday Spirit” on other humans. Oh, no. Out come the little doggie outfits. Now for some dogs – you know who you are, you are used to this abominable action. Wearing coats, sweaters, boots and ridiculous hats are, shudder, a daily occurrence for you. For others, this is not the case. Yet, do not take the offending articles and remove them to your special hiding place. Embrace this novel silliness. Just grin and bear it this once. It is only once a year and the rewards – pats, cookies, treats and other forms of affection - outweigh the superior look of the cat next door.
7 Mind your tail!
So, if you want to survive the silly season intact, go along with much of the frivolity. One last word - whenever you are anywhere near the tree – Inside Tail. As for the Christmas Dinner table…Can you really help it if your tail just happens to knock something onto the floor?
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