While artificial Christmas trees are usually the safest option for our pets, they do not come without any risks. It is important to be aware of the risks so that we can minimize the risk of harm to our beloved dogs. Pet-proof your home this Christmas season with our tips for artificial Christmas trees for dogs!
When choosing an artificial Christmas tree for a dog, it’s important to consider the risks involved with any cords, fragile ornaments, food-based ornaments, and the stability of the tree before placing it in your home.
Dangers of Artificial Christmas Trees for Dogs
In most cases, artificial Christmas trees are recommended for dogs rather than real trees. Many real Christmas trees grow sharp needles that can fall and puncture your dog’s skin. Natural pine needles are also mildly toxic to dogs and can cause blockages or punctures in their digestive tract. Top this off with the use of pesticides on Christmas tree farms, and you’ve got yourself a potentially toxic tree. But are artificial trees always the answer to these problems?
Unfortunately, artificial Christmas trees are not a completely safe alternative to real Christmas trees. Artificial Christmas trees are known to host toxic contaminants, such as lead, barium, and tin, in order to make them fire-resistant. Older artificial Christmas trees may become brittle with age, causing intestinal blockages or punctures when ingested. Furthermore, because artificial trees are often more lightweight than real trees, your dog may be more at risk of toppling your tree over and sustaining an injury. So how can you minimize the risks involved to your pet? Read on to find out more!
Safety Tips for Dogs and Artificial Christmas Tree
Pet-proofing Christmas starts with taking precautionary measures for your artificial Christmas tree. In order to protect your curious pup from harm, consider avoiding electrical cords, using few or no food decorations on your tree, investing in a strong tree base, and placing fragile ornaments at the top end of the tree.
Stray Clear from Cords
Where possible, avoid implementing cords into your tree. However, if you need to use a cord for lighting, there are several precautionary measures that you can take to protect your pooch from electrocution. Firstly, consider installing an automatic shut-off extension to your cords. This allows your electrical cords to shut off when damaged. Second, hide your electrical cords in a place where your dog cannot access them. This might be behind furniture, if your tree is close to any. If you cannot hide your cords, keep them flush against walls, as dangling cords attract attention from curious pets. Finally, you may consider blocking your pet’s access to electrical cords using a pet or baby gate.
No Food Items on the Tree
Adorning your Christmas tree with food decorations might sound tempting, but should be avoided where possible. Candy canes, gumdrops, and other high-sugar treats may cause diarrhea in your dog. As well as this, nibbling away on edible decorations can lead to gnawing on inedible ornaments that may harm your pup further. Natural plants can also be harmful to your dog, especially mistletoe, holly berries, poinsettia, Jerusalem cherry, and daffodils, which can cause convulsions, diarrhea, and vomiting.
Invest in a Strong Base for the Tree
Make sure that your artificial Christmas tree has a strong, stable base. By using a strong base, your tree is less likely to topple over after your curious pup brushes against it. When choosing your artificial Christmas tree, be sure to check reviews online if possible – many buyers will report issues such as an unstable or weak base, and you may find that a heavier, more stable tree is safer for your pup.
It may also help to anchor your Christmas tree against a wall where possible. If you cannot anchor your tree, consider placing it in a corner, where its risk of falling is reduced.
Keep Fragile Ornaments on the Top Branches
Be sure to place your most fragile ornaments up high on your Christmas tree. This helps to protect them from accidental damage and chew damage that your pooch could inflict. Towards the lower half of the tree, consider hanging your shatter-proof and easily replaceable ornaments. As well as this, it’s important to make sure that your Christmas ornaments are securely attached to your tree’s branches to prevent damage to the ornaments or harm to your dog.
7 Best Artificial Christmas Trees for Dogs
With all the risks covered, you are now ready to start shopping for your artificial Christmas tree! Here, we’ve created a list of just some of the safest, pet-proof Christmas trees for your home. Be sure to consider your dog’s habits and behaviors as an individual when choosing your tree, and take any precautonary measures necessary to protect them from harm.
1. Best Choice Products Artificial Christmas Tree
This 7.5 foot tall tree makes for a naturalistic centerpiece to any pet-proof home. Its full-bodied shape with over a thousand branch tips makes it perfect for a range of hanging ornaments and lights.
This pre-lit tree eliminates the need for multiple cords. reducing the risk of harm to your dog. It’s also durable, made with steel hinges and pliant PVC material that should withstand minor cases of investigative chewing. This tree is also heavier than other trees on this list, weighing 30 pounds when assembled. While this makes the tree more difficult to move, it also makes it more difficult to topple over.
According to some buyers, the base is not sturdy enough for a 7.5 foot tall tree, and as a result, the tree may learn to one side or collapse altogether. For dogs who brush against or attempt to play with the tree, this could pose a hazard. Other buyers report occasional instances of branches without feathering, leaving wire exposed that could harm persistent chewers.
2. Vickerman Carmel Pine Artificial Tree
This unique Vienna twig provides plenty of decoration space for the more design-savvy owner. With its natural brown and green color scheme, this tree looks as if it was plucked straight from an ancient forest and placed in your home!
This tree is not removable from its burlap base, making it secure and easy to move. The pinecone decorations are sturdy and well-attached to the branches, according to satisfied reviewers. As well as this, the tree is pre-lit, eliminating the need for several tangled cables leading to your tree.
Some buyers report issues with the sturdiness of this tree. In some cases, the base is not flat and the tree rocks when touched. Weighing only 5.34 pounds, a curious dog may be able to topple the tree over. As well as this, some buyers find that the branches are flimsy and the fake needles fall out easily. This could pose a choking hazard to curious dogs, especially when older needles become brittle.
3. National Tree Company White Artificial Tree
Looking to bring the outdoors winter wonderland inside? Look no further than this snow-white artificial Christmas tree. While certainly not the most natural of the trees listed, it adds a unique and festive flair to any home.
With over 520 branch tips, there’s plenty of space to hang your more fragile ornaments in the top portions of the tree. It is also not pre-lit, making it ideal for owners who do not want to risk electrocution to their pets. Weighing only 6.72 pounds, this tree is also easy to move away from curious pets if necessary – just be aware that its lighter weight could make it easier for your dog to topple the tree over.
It is usually recommended to buy plain Christmas trees for your dog to reduce the amount of interest your dog has in interacting with it. While this tree is aesthetically pleasing, its aluminum foil branches make it all the more interesting for your dog. While aluminum itself cannot poison your dog, it can cause intestinal blockages when consumed in large amounts. If your dog is likely to chew on your artificial Christmas tree, consider a safer option for them.
4. Best Choice Products Premium Hinged Fir Tree
This 7.5 foot tall fir tree is a slender, space-saving design that adds that extra bit of festivity to any small space in your home. This tree is not pre-lit, is fire-resistant, and made with PVC and metal.
The fir pencil tree is made with hinged branches for easy storage, making it easy to put away if your dog shows too much interest in it. It has over one thousand branch tips, leaving more space for fragile ornaments to be hung in the top portions of the tree. Not only this, but its slender design makes it ideal for tight corners, which are often the best place to keep a Christmas tree away from your dog.
Some customers find that the base of this fir pencil tree is unstable and not durable. For some, the base breaks upon assembly. Its ultra-slim design also makes it more lightweight than other artificial trees, weighing a modest 17.6 pounds. This makes it more prone to toppling over when your dog investigates it.
5. Artificial Tree by National Tree Company
Looking to add a lifelike Christmas tree to your home? This artificial hickory cedar tree stands at 5 feet tall and is 24 inches in diameter, weighing 5.51 pounds when assembled. The tree is not pre-lit and is fire-resistant.
This sensational tree is made with 371 branch tips, making it perfect for heavier ornaments and lighting. Its small size and slender design make it ideal for tight corners, where it can be kept out of your dog’s way. Its lightweight build also makes it easy to move if you need to move it away from your dog. Finally, if you are looking for a tree with no lights to reduce the risk of electrocution to your pup, this tree is not pre-lit, giving you the freedom to choose whether to add lights or not.
Unfortunately for your dog, this tree is often described as not sturdy. For some buyers, the tree easily topples over or leans to one side. This is because the base is relatively small and light compared to the tree itself, and the tree only weighs 5.51 pounds. If your dog is likely to investigate or play with your artificial tree, consider a heavier, sturdier option.
6. National Tree Company Pre-Lit Artificial Tree
This natural, life-like Dunhill fir might be just what you need to complete your Christmas preparations. Standing at 6 feet tall and 46 inches in diameter, this tree adds a charming and warm feel to any home.
Its pre-strung lights eliminate the need for multiple cords running towards your tree. Thanks to its full-body shape, this tree is heavier than the others on this list, weighing 29 pounds when assembled. This makes it very sturdy and difficult for even the most playful dog to topple over.
On the downside, some buyers find that the branches are flimsy and easily fall off of the tree. This could pose a choking hazard to your dog. As well as this, the fake needles are said to be hard and scratchy, which adds another risk of intestinal punctures if your dog ingests any part of the tree.
7. Puleo International Pre-Lit Artificial Palm Tree
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Looking to add something different to your home this year? This 6 foot pre-lit palm tree may be exactly what you need. Made with durable PVC, this quirky palm tree is ideal for brightening any walkaway or room in your home.
As a pre-lit artificial tree, your need for implementing several cords to light this tree is reduced. If you are worried about brittle PCV needles potentially choking your dog, this artificial palm tree has fewer branches and thus fewer needles that could harm your pooch.
Weighing a modest 22.9 pounds, this tree is known to topple over due to instability. With its small base and slim design, an investigative pooch may be able to push it over, potentially causing injury. As well as this, exposed wiring is also sometimes reported, leaving a risk of puncture wounds and electrocution to your pup.
Artificial Christmas trees are safer than real Christmas trees, but they do not come without risks. When placing your artificial tree, be sure to hide cords, place delicate ornaments higher up, and to block off your dog’s access if necessary. Once your dog is protected from these hazards, you and your pooch can enjoy the season’s festivities without worry!