Dogs love Christmas just as much as their owners, study suggests

Dogs love Christmas just as much as their owners, study suggests
Little dog gets to be the star at the top of the …
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A new study has suggested that pets enjoy the Christmas festivities as much as their owners – and even recognise who Santa Claus is.

Many owners said that their dogs' excitement is heightened during December, and believe it's down to having more guests in the house, the aroma of Christmas dinner and the opportunity to play with wrapping paper.

A staggering 91 per cent of dog owners say it enhances their own experience at Christmas. So much so, that a staggering £17 million is spent on Christmas presents for pets.

ManyPets teamed up with dog behaviourist Leon Towers to understand why Christmas is the most wonderful time of year for pooches.

"Pets adore the festive period as it's a time for cheer and happiness with their favourite humans," Leon explained.

"Thanks to their amazing senses and intuition, there’s a whole host of reasons why dogs enjoy Christmas just as much as we do. Whilst it's always important to put their safety first, I’ve come together with ManyPets to help dog owners maximise the holidays and ensure their furry friends get the best out of the festive period."


Dogs are also believed to be in the festive spirit as a result of five Christmassy additions:

Deck the Halls

Festive decorations can be stimulating and attractive to dogs, especially the shapes and fun characters, so expect them to be curious about the new pals that have sprung up overnight. Dogs are visual creatures and are hyper-aware of their surroundings so anything out of the ordinary like baubles hanging on the tree or a garland swinging from a normally clear surface is likely to pique their interest.

Silent Lights

This time of year also sees festive lights appear on every surface.

Dogs' vision is different to ours meaning they can see better in the dark, have better motion visibility than we do, and see a reduced range of colours – blue, yellow, and greys.

They don’t see red, purple and orange like humans. Most dogs prefer soft, low lighting to stark, bright lights as they promote a more relaxing mood which is often found in lowly-lit, glistening Christmas fairy lights – perfect for creating a relaxing environment for your dog.

Dog’s Dinner

The smell of the turkey roasting in the oven doesn’t just get our taste buds going, your pet’s mouth will also be watering.

A dog’s sense of smell is up to 10,000-100,000 times stronger than a human’s, while their sense of taste is just a fraction of ours. Dogs can smell when a food is ‘high value’ and something that’s going to set them drooling so don’t be surprised if you see tails wagging when the turkey is being prepped.

Santa Paws

Dogs love present unwrapping, even if the presents aren’t for them.

The noise of the ripping, the scrunching of paper into balls, the squeals of excitement as you unwrap something you really wanted.

Dogs are sensory creatures – driven primarily by sight, smell, and sound - and love exploring the different textures of ribbon, card, and paper. Maybe their present is a squeaky ball that they can hear through the wrapping or a treat they can smell through the gift bag.

Festive Walkies

Regular winter dog walks are often rushed affairs limited to one or two family members shuffling around in the rain and cold, but Christmas Day can often sees your whole pack leave the house and your dog is the centre of attention. No wonder it’s their favourite walk of the year.

While there’s no ideal length of dog walk (because every dog is different) a suitable festive walk allows them to release all their festive energy and get plenty of sniffs to decrease any stress levels and stimulate them mentally and physically.

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