The dangers of gift wrapping for your dog

dog and gift box

Many religious holidays and even birthdays involve the exchange of gifts. During the holiday season, gift-giving goes into overdrive, and along with it, gift wrapping. While wrapping presents is a seemingly joyful and innocuous activity, it in fact poses several risks for your dog.

Wrapping paper, tape, ribbon, and bows

Unbeknownst to many pet parents, chlorine bleach and toxic dyes are sometimes used to create those colorful patterns on wrapping paper. Gift-wrapping involves more than just paper and boxes, though. Tape, ribbons and bows, and even scissors can be swallowed by an unsupervised dog, which can lead to intestinal blockages and rupture.

Gift boxes and packaging

You’ll also want to keep your dog away from the boxes, too. Dr. Debra Primovic, DVM of the pet place says, “There is nothing in most general cardboard that is “toxic” but it is not a good idea for your dog to eat it. If ingested, it is possible that it could cause a gastric or intestinal obstruction that would have the potential to be life threatening.”

Moreover, if your dog chews into a package with electronics, there is also the potential for your dog to accidentally swallow batteries which can cause chemical burns and threaten your dog’s life.

Alternatives methods of gift wrapping

Dog-friendly wrapping paper is available for purchase, but another potentially dog-safe and more environmentally friendly alternative is to use cloth to wrap gifts instead. Not only can you reuse the fabric, but you eliminate the need for scissors, tape, bows, and paper that can all be accidentally swallowed by your dog.

All in all, if you’re worried that you can’t keep your overactive pup away from the presents while you’re wrapping them, consider keeping your dog in a separate room, instead.

Are you going out of town for the holidays? We’d be happy to come look after your dog!


Candace Elise Hoes is a blogger at Kim’s Urban Hounds. She is a graduate of the MFA Writing Program at California College of the Arts.

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