What is toxic for Toy Poodles at Christmas?

Everyone loves Christmas, and Toy Poodles are no exception. For them, the holidays are the perfect opportunity to spend quality time with their beloved owners. 

However, popular decorations and foods can be toxic to Toy Poodles. In this article, we will explain what is toxic to Toy Poodles at Christmas. 

Christmas Tree Water 

To stay healthy and fresh, natural Christmas trees are kept in water enriched with additives (fertilizers), pesticides, preservatives, and even aspirin. 

A curious Toy Poodle may sniff around the Christmas tree, use the pot as a water dish, and drink from the chemically treated water. 

Depending on the type of chemicals used in the water, your Toy Poodle may develop digestive upset or even poisoning. Not to mention that the water harbors bacteria and molds. 


Another Christmas hallmark is the mistletoe. However, mistletoe contains lectins and phoratoxins. Both chemicals are toxic to Toy Poodles. 

Lectins and phoratoxins target the dog’s heart, reducing its rate and causing low blood pressure. Other symptoms of mistletoe poisoning include stomach upset (vomiting and diarrhea), general weakness, difficulty breathing, and behavioral changes. 

The good news is that severe mistletoe intoxication cases are rare. A Toy Poodle would have to eat a significant amount to experience poisoning. 

Holly Berries 

Another decorative yet toxic plant for Toy Poodles is holly. The holly leaves and berries contain chemicals known as saponins. 

In large amounts, saponins cause severe gastrointestinal distress – drooling, appetite loss, vomiting, and diarrhea. It can also result in extreme lethargy and head shaking.  


The last toxic plant on our list is the eye-catching poinsettia. This plant produces a milky sap which is irritating if ingested. 

The signs of poinsettia poisoning In Toy Poodles are relatively mild and include issues such as drooling, vomiting, appetite loss, and diarrhea. 

Candy Canes 

The popular candy canes are also toxic to Toy Poodles. At Christmas, they can be found as decorations and as ingredients in certain foods. 

Either way, candy canes pose a serious risk because they contain xylitol. Xylitol is a sweetener added to low-sugar sweets. However, it is extremely toxic to dogs. 

Xylitol poisoning in Toy Poodles can be fatal. Xylitol causes severe hypoglycemia (low blood sugar levels), seizures, and liver failure. 

Pecan Pie 

Pecan pies are traditionally made for Christmas dinner. However, pecans are highly toxic to Toy Poodles due to a chemical called juglone.  

Juglone causes digestive upset in dogs. Plus, pecans are very high in fats and may trigger a bout of acute pancreatitis. They are also often contaminated with molds that produce dangerous chemicals called aflatoxins. 

Peppermint Bark 

Peppermint bark is a popular sweet featuring chocolate and candy canes. Both ingredients are toxic to Toy Poodles. 

Chocolate contains theobromine and caffeine, hence being toxic. Candy canes, as already explained, often feature xylitol and may cause a life-threatening drop in blood sugar levels. 

Christmas Bread 

Another typical Christmas food is Christmas bread. Christmas bread is toxic to Toy Poodles because it contains raisins. 

The exact reason raisins are toxic to dogs is unknown. It is believed that some dogs lack the enzymes necessary for metabolizing raisins. In such cases, eating raisins will result in kidney failure. 


Eggnog is the most popular Christmas drink. Sadly, it is toxic to dogs because of two ingredients – alcohol and nutmeg. 

Toy Poodles cannot process alcohol, and the rum content in eggnog is enough to cause alcohol poisoning. Symptoms include loss of balance, lethargy, low body temperature, and impaired breathing. 

Nutmeg contains a compound called myristicin. Myristicin causes increased heart rate, high blood pressure, seizures, hallucinations, and abdominal pain. 


Around Christmas, batteries can be found everywhere. Common examples are toys, decorations, and greeting cards. 

Some types of batteries contain heavy metals like lead, zinc, and mercury. In Toy Poodles, even a single battery is enough to cause intoxication. 

Heavy metal poisoning results in internal organ damage. The poisoning can be fatal depending on which organs are damaged and how severely. 

Antifreeze (Ethylene Glycol)

Antifreeze is not directly related to Christmas. However, it is used during winter and, therefore, worth mentioning. 

Antifreeze (ethylene glycol) is a liquid used to prevent freezing. Toy Poodles and dogs, in general, are inclined to ingest the liquid because of its sweet taste. 

Once ingested, antifreeze causes kidney damage. In more severe cases, the damage can result in kidney failure and possibly death.  

Conclusion: Christmas Dangers For Toy Poodles 

All in all, when you are a dog parent, Christmas preparations require additional planning. Certain decorations and foods are the hallmarks of Christmas, but they pose a danger to Toy Poodles. 

It is important to avoid such decorations and foods. Also, always supervise your Toy Poodle around risky and potentially toxic items. Call the vet immediately if you doubt or suspect your dog ate something it was not supposed to. 

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