Christmas is a wonderful time, and cocker spaniel puppies are adorable, but combining the two can be a recipe for disaster. Fragile things could fall off, poisonous water could be drunk, or the whole tree could come crashing down. How can you prevent this? There are a number of ways, and we’ll be going through them in the article.

Supervision

Keep a close eye on your puppy when they’re in the same room as the Christmas tree. You’ll be able to redirect them easily, scoop them up when they’re getting a little too nosy, and rescue them if things start to go wrong. If your puppy is good at recall, you can call them to you when they get too close to the tree. And if they aren’t yet, this is a good way to practice it. Teach the puppy to come when called, even if there’s something more exciting to look at.

Crating

But what if you can’t supervise your puppy? If you’re going outside to decorate, or into the car to go look at a neighbor’s Christmas lights, it’s a good idea to keep your cocker spaniel puppy in their crate. Crate training is a bit difficult at first, but very rewarding. Some dogs love having their own space, and take to it like ducks to water. Others are a bit more claustrophobic and wary of the space. These puppies might take a bit more training to get used to the crate. By building positive associations with the crate, and training your puppy to go into it when commanded to, you’ll have a safe and calm puppy, and a safe house when you go out.

Baby Gates

It may not look too attractive in pictures, but putting baby gates around your tree will keep it safe from your curious little pup. Step over the gates to water the tree, decorate it, or put presents under it, and don’t worry about your cocker spaniel ruining it or getting hurt. Just be careful that you don’t get into an accident by tripping over it or stepping too high; that’d just defeat the purpose. They’ll be safe, you’ll be happy, and it’ll be a merry Christmas for everyone involved.

Training

Training

The best way to keep your tree and puppy safe is by training your puppy to leave the tree alone. This is where the important “leave it” command comes in. The best part? This command can be used for other things too, like dropped food or medications. It’s a bit difficult to teach, but when you have a curious puppy, there’s no better way to get them to ignore distracting stimuli. In short, it’s an important command for your dog’s safety.

Deterring

If your puppy hasn’t quite gotten the hang of the “leave it” command yet, you can help out a bit, by making the tree less enticing. A bottle of Bitter Apple Spray will send your puppy in the other direction once they get a lick of it. It’s harmless, but tastes bad enough that the puppy won’t want to mess with the tree after tasting it. If there’s something your pup prefers to avoid, like plastic bags or oranges, surround the tree with it. It’ll make for a safe tree, an unharmed puppy, and a funny picture. And of course, there’s the simplest, 2-letter deterrent: “No.” Said in a sternly enough voice, and repeated enough, your pup will eventually get the hint and leave the tree alone.

Setting up the Tree Safely

Even the best-trained puppy will get curious. Make sure no one gets hurt by setting up the tree in the safest ways possible. Hang the more fragile ornaments out of your puppy’s reach. Keep the water covered with a tree skirt. Secure the lights and cords so your puppy can’t chew on them. And most importantly