Is Christmas Tree Water Bad For Dogs?
Back in the old days, Christmas trees were usually sold with just a primary wooden base nailed to the bottom for balance. You’d go down to the hardware store, pay them $30, haul the tree home, and stick it in a corner. After a few days, the needles would start to dry out, and eventually, shortly after Christmas Day, you would put it out onto the sidewalk for removal or recycling.
But, as appetites for larger trees grew (and house and ceiling heights too!), people began spending more money and buying taller trees, which need a more substantial base. They also buy them earlier and leave them up past New Years’. Along with these new preferences came a need for a base that could hold water and give your Christmas tree a little more shelf life. So, those of us with curious pets inevitably discovered that dogs love drinking water straight from the Christmas Tree water holder. It tastes different and smells different, so it is bad for our dog friends? As Charla Dawson, owner of Dapper Dog and Classy Cat, points out, “The water itself is not poisonous, but if a fertilizer was added to the water, it might be poisonous. This fertilizer may cause the dog to suffer from diarrhea and vomiting.” (Tree preservatives may also be added to the water, helping to keep the tree fresh during transport.) Dawson, therefore, advises that you cover the base.
How Do I Stop My Dog Drinking Christmas Tree Water?
A quick and easy remedy is to make sure your dog’s water bowl is full to discourage exploring the pine-scented water under your tree. But if that won’t work, try covering the tree bowl with some well-secured foil or plastic wrap to prevent your water lapping loved one.
Or, if you’re one to accessorize this kind of thing, you could take on a more decorative approach and make a Christmas themed cover for reuse next year. One impressive
example is a pretty cover made out of burlap, as seen on the DIY Showoff blog. With some imagination, you can probably come up with other innovative solutions.
Even if you just put plain water in the stand, I would advise covering the exposed base. The tree, which may have been sprayed with insecticides or other chemicals, will leach compounds into the water. It’s better to be ultra-safe than sorry when it comes to the holidays and your dog.
For more information on Christmas tree safety for you dog, see our article ‘Are Christmas Tree Needles Bad for Dogs?‘
Article written by Author: The Dog Daily Expert