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Dogs and Easter - 5 Tips for a Safe and Happy Time!

Written by Adaptil, published on 1 April 2021

As well as religious celebrations, Easter can be about fun; such as eating tasty food and treats, or having an Easter Egg hunt! 

But don’t forget your dog! While they may not understand what Easter is about, there’s no reason why they can’t enjoy the celebrations. There are lots of ways to have a fun Easter with your pet; as long as you take a little caution and preparation to make sure everyone stays safe and happy!

For a safe and happy time, watch out for these common Easter items!

Dog with child

Chocolate: Outside of the religious elements, chocolate is one of the first things to come to mind when we think of Easter. Yet as most of us know, chocolate is harmful to dogs. This is because chocolate contains theobromine (dark chocolates will contain more), which can be toxic to animals. Yet unfortunately, dogs will quite happily eat it if given the chance - it tastes yummy to them too, so it’s important to be very careful to keep your dog away from any Easter chocolate!

Of course, there are some dog friendly Easter treats available, such as dog-safe-chocolate eggs. But to avoid confusion for your pup, it might be best just to stick to their usual doggie kibble or favourite treats - they’ll be just as happy!

So if you plan to have an Easter Egg hunt this year, be sure to check that all chocolate treats have been retrieved from your home or garden before you let your pooch explore!

Alternatively, why not create a dog-friendly Easter treat hunt, and let your pooch sniff out and find some safe, yummy treats! We’ve also listed some other fun ideas for your pooch below to ensure a happy and safe time!

Easter hot cross buns: Chocolate is not the only ‘human’ food we should be careful of. Treats such as fruit breads and hot cross buns can also be bad for your dog - even a small amount of dried fruit (such as grapes, raisins or currants) can be poisonous, so be sure to keep these Easter treats well out of your dog’s reach.  

If you suspect that your dog has eaten any food containing dried fruit, contact your vet immediately.  

Spring flowers: One of the first signs that Spring is in the air, is the early appearance of daffodils, tulips, crocuses and bluebells! Depending on your location, they can be abundant, and you may have them in your garden or home. Easter is the perfect time to enjoy these lovely blooms - but be sure to keep them away from your dog. Eating, or even drinking the water that some cut flowers have been in, can make your dog ill.

Vomiting, diarrhoea, drooling, lethargy, and dermatitis are just some of the symptoms that indicate that your dog has ingested a plant or flower that is poisonous to them. You should be extra careful if your pooch is prone to digging, as the bulbs of the daffodil, tulip and hyacinth are also toxic if eaten by your dog.

Again, if you suspect your dog has eaten a plant that they shouldn't have, contact your vet immediately.

Small Easter toys: Some Easter Eggs may contain a small toy inside, which is exciting for children! But extra care should be taken to ensure that your dog doesn’t play with or chew these as they could cause obstructions in your dog's digestive system.

5 Tips for a safe and happy Easter with your dog

Dog holding a easter basket

It is important to be aware of your dog’s safety at any time of the year, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun with them! 

So to help you have an egg-citing Easter with your pet, here are some tips that will make Easter with your dog fun and rewarding!

  1. Easter Food Hunt: Dogs have super sensitive noses: compared with a human’s 5 million scent receptors, dogs can have 100 million (sometimes more, depending on the breed!) scent receptors in their nose! Scent training your pooch, and having a dog-friendly treat hunt can be a very rewarding and fun experience for both you and your pooch. Enjoy Easter with them by hiding doggy treats for them to sniff out and find! But remember; keep your dog away from any human-chocolate Easter Egg hunts.
  2. Gifts: You will find a whole array of Easter gifts available for your favourite pooch.  Make sure these are all doggy safe; a puzzle or activity feeder will keep them happy for a long time! Or if your dog is a little unsettled by new experiences, or seems nervous about new Easter decorations, why not try an ADAPTIL Calm Home Diffuser; clinically proven to help dogs stay calm and confident in new situations!
  3. Easter Walk: What better way to burn off that huge Easter lunch and chocolate than a long walk in the countryside with your dog? Throwing a ball or frisbee, playing tug- o-war with a rope or stick, or hide and seek in the woods is great fun for the whole family.  Be mindful, however, that if you are wandering through farmland in the springtime, to keep your dog on a lead so that you do not disturb any animals. 
  4. Play a new game: Teaching your dog a new trick can be great for everyone involved.  You may need to adjust the activity level of the game depending on your dog’s age;  for example, a puppy will love to play tug-o-war; a young dog might be hungry to learn new tricks like jumping over a hurdle, and an older dog might love to play ‘find-the-treat’ which could involve hiding treats under a series of upturned paper/plastic cups. This is great fun and creates a special bonding time!
  5. Photoshoot: Most of us have a camera on our phones, and fresh Spring weather can be a great time to snap away and get some lovely shots of your canine friend! We’ve put together some tips to take great pictures with your pet, so why not take the perfect Easter shots!

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