Gen Y Dogma: I’m Afraid My Dog Will Ruin Christmas

Christina Peden
by Christina Peden
O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree, Matilda will deee-stroy thee!

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about how we were planning to celebrate Matilda’s first Christmas as a family. I really want a Christmas tree, even though I’m not sure it would be such a great idea with a crazy puppy in the house.

The Christmas tree is my most favorite part of my most favorite holiday — there’s just something about turning the lights down low and basking in the glow of the tree that gives me the warm fuzzies (am I alone in this?). So the prospect of not having one didn’t exactly fill me with glee.

Thankfully, we (sort of) found a solution — at the grocery store, of all places. Last weekend, while doing our weekly grocery shop, I came across a bin full of Christmas tree tops. They`re exactly what they sound like: the top two feet of the tree, sawed off and nailed into a tree stand. It`s not perfect, but at least I get to have to have some semblance of a tree this year (at least that`s what I`m telling myself).

Related: How To Do Your Dog’s First Christmas Up In Style

Right now, the tree is nicely lit and decorated, and sitting in the middle of our dining room table, because it`s the only place Matilda can`t get to it.

Still, because I’m paranoid and more than a little neurotic, I have some visions dancing in my head; not of sugar plums, but of doggie destruction. Specifically, the destruction of our little tree and all the Christmas presents that go with it.

Keep reading to see what my worst Christmas fears would look like if they came to life.

Break Out The Decorations, Mom!

Our Christmas tree is full of balls (of varying sizes). Which I know sounds rude, hey — but it’s true.

I am, of course, talking about our Christmas tree decorations (minds out of the gutter, folks!), which Matilda and our cat, Oscar seem to be working together to destroy.

Related: Top 10 Holiday Gift Guide For Dogs 2014

It’s funny because Oscar pretends to hate Matilda, but every so often we catch them snuggling or giving each other kisses. I’m convinced it’s all part of their master plan — to make us think they’re just silly, sparring adversaries while they secretly plot to take over the world (or at least our apartment).

The “destroy-the-tree” conspiracy is just another instance of their not-so-secret teamwork. Oscar does the typical cat thing. He bats at the Christmas tree ornaments and yes, eventually, they fall off, but not just onto the table. He makes sure they get all the way to floor, where Matilda takes over — or at least tries to.

So far, they haven’t been successful. The second Ryan or I hear an ornament hit the wood floor it’s a race to snatch the ornament away before Matilda can start mowing down on it. We’re winning — for now. We’ll see how long that lasts.

Mmmm… Garlands!

Honestly? I’m just waiting for the day it happens: the day when the entire tree gets knocked over and all hell breaks loose.

Either Oscar’s going to do it or Matilda will finally find a way to reach the tree herself and bring the whole thing crashing down.

I’m quite sure that Matilda would love to get her paws (and teeth) on the shiny garlands I currently have draped around the tree. Those strings of silver snowflakes and golden bells? I can only imagine what they’d look like when she got through with them (or they go through her).

What I really don’t want to imagine is the size of our vet bill after she’d had her fun with the Christmas tree! As much as I wish she pooped sparkly snowflakes instead of that other, not-so-sparkly stuff, I really don’t think this is the best way to make that a reality.

We just spent $150 at the vet last week after she got hold of my beloved rain boots. Apparently, rubber + doggie digestion system = a bloody bum-hole. You’d think she’d have learned her lesson about chewing things she shouldn’t, but somehow I don’t think she’s mastered that part just yet.

(And don’t worry — Matilda and her bum are just fine.)

Presents? … For me?!

I’m pretty sure there’s no way on earth that we’ll be able to put presents under our tree. Aside from the fact that it’s tiny and on top of our dining room table, Matilda would be able to reach them.

I can picture exactly what she would do to a round of beautifully wrapped Christmas presents, and believe me, it’s not pretty. Shiny wrapping paper? Pretty ribbons? I might as well just make a huge sign that says, “Eat me, Matilda!!!”, because that’s exactly what would happen. And we’d have to say “bye bye” to everyone’s gifts for this year — sorry, familia!

I don’t think I’ll even be able to stick Ryan’s presents under the tree for Christmas morning (*tear)… though I’m hoping I can come up with some sort of ingenious scheme to outwit Matilda’s insane puppy brain before then. If you’ve got any tips, please leave them in the comments!

Has your pet every “ruined” Christmas in a spectacularly bad or hilarious way? Got any tricks on keeping dogs away from trees and present? Let me know, I’m all ears!

Christina Peden is a lifelong animal lover and avid wordsmith. She lives in Toronto with her boyfriend Ryan where they are proud pet parents to puppy, Matilda and cat, Oscar. In her spare time, she can be found enjoying Toronto, Canada’s all-too-short patio season, taking advantage of the city’s numerous parks or curled up with a good book.

Christina Peden
Christina Peden

Christina Peden is a lifelong animal lover and avid wordsmith. She lives in Toronto with her boyfriend Ryan where they are proud pet parents to puppy, Matilda and cat, Oscar. In her spare time, she can be found enjoying Toronto, Canada's all-too-short patio season, taking advantage of the city's numerous parks or curled up with a good book.

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