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The Good Dog's Guide To Christmas

25/12/2015 7:15 AM AEDT | Updated 15/07/2016 12:51 PM AEST
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Close up of dog wearing Christmas hat

Well it's the night before Christmas and all through the house,

Humans are stressing while I pick random things up in my mouth.

As the stockings are hung by the chimney with care,

I'm chilling on your sofa -- paws in the air.

Because, human buddies, dogs have got this Christmas thing sorted. So here's a bit of Christmas advice from Paws Truly. With many festive, wet kisses and waggy tails.

When buying presents don't forget the dog. Obviously this is an important consideration because a dog can never have enough things to chew, eat or lie on. Heated pet-bed for winter? Chilled water bowl for summer? No, that's not overkill. The great thing is the dog will always appreciate what you buy, right down to the wrapping he might hypothetically shred on the floor.

The tree. Sure, decorate it. Make a fuss. But stop looking so worried. I'm not going to pee on it unless it's a real one, those plastic ones smell... wait, what, it's real? Don't mind me, back in a bit...

Dressing up. I don't know why you do this to me. Jingly collar, Santa coat in the searing Aussie summer, reindeer antlers! There should be a 'seriously unamused dog' emoticon to cover this. It would show a dog 'accidentally ruining' YOUR new Christmas outfit. I'm not a freaking adorable tiny reindeer. I'm 7 kilograms of proud hound. Next thing you'll try putting me in one of those ridiculous Northern Hemisphere ugly jumpers with a special tail hole.

Treats. Oh yeah. Treats rock. They rock around the Christmas Tree like the crazy circles I just started doing. I'm not talking specially made dog-food treats. I'm talking leftover turkey and ham and gravy with the juices. I will fix you with my big brown eyes until you melt and make up a special Christmas plate for the dog. I will even watch the roast cook for you while you wrap presents and stuff. Just do it on the BBQ with the lid open... Of course, the key with treats is knowing where to stop, and recognising when you are being plied with too many, so you don't have a bloated belly like a little dog I once knew. Again, hypothetically speaking.

Then there's walkies! I lurve walks everyday -- but Christmas walkies are good for everyone. Especially since we all know you're going to have that extra serve of pudding. Backyard cricket is an appropriate Southern Hemisphere substitute.

Naps are ace everyday, but especially Christmas Day when my tummy is full. Everyone should nap after lunch, in afternoon heat, wherever they fall. Those are the rules. No pranking though like stealing Grandma's glasses or tickling the fur on the dog's paws. Because that leads to...

Snapping. And snapping at Christmas is bad. Over food, toys, or just because you are tired and sick of each other. Snapping will, and should, get your nose smacked.

Your Pack. This is a really simple one. Look after your pack. Christmas can be a lonely time if you don't have a pack. Appreciate your pack. Love your pack. Try to be with your pack. Or if you can't -- pick a pack that's proud to make you an honorary member. Everyone can be your pack today. Remember, you don't see dogs holding a grudge, and look how happy we are.

Mostly, just remember, I don't care what you buy me, I just want to be with you, share the day and enjoy your company because that's what Christmas is all about. Get it, humans?

PS: If you are travelling, make sure you 'paws' for a break so you arrive safe.

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