Do you hang a stocking for your dog or wrap presents to put under the tree?
How can we use presents for our dogs to help create a Calm Christmas?
Ways to invite our dog to do stress relieving behaviors in enriching ways.
- If you are in a multi-dog household, keep chews up and out of the area while dogs are roaming to prevent any temptation to resource guard or fight over them.
- Have your dog lay on a mat, blanket, or towel to chew on the prize. This reinforces calm on the mat. When your dog gets off the mat, the chew is removed and put up unless the dog is called back to the mat to reset the situation.
- If I'm doing this with dogs that don't know the rules (stay on the mat) I will either place dogs in separate rooms with a door/gate barrier or use a human roadblock. For example, Azul knows the mat rule but puppy Finnegan, my son's dog, does not so I would place Azul's mat in a corner of the room and sit in front of him so I can stop the Finnegan invasion so Azul doesn't feel threatened. And most likely my son is going to be working on teaching Finnegan the mat rule too. If your not supervising inexperienced dogs closely, put them in separate rooms with a barrier between them.