Is your pet on Santa’s naughty list?

With 12.5 million pets in the doghouse this Christmas, the most cracking Christmas crimes committed by pets have been revealed.

Devouring the Christmas fairy, relieving themselves on the Christmas tree and flashing their ‘lipstick’ in front of unwitting relatives, feature on a list of festive ‘faux-paws’ that British cats and dogs commit over the festive season, according to research from pet welling specialist

The study of 2,000 adults who own a cat or dog revealed that 53% of pet owners admit their four-legged friends have wreaked havoc over the festive period, with one in 10 sating they’ve embarrassed them in front of their family and friends.

Charlotte Harper, co-founder of said: “Your cat or dog might be your best friend, but that doesn’t mean they can’t cause chaos from time to time. Whether it’s subjecting Auntie Margaret’s leg to a mortifying amorous display of affection, gifting fleas to your mothers-in-law dog, or dragging their butt across the floor while everyone’s eating, their pet-iquette in front of family members can leave a lot to be desired.”

A quarter of the nation’s felines and hounds have knocked over the tree and one in 7 have broken wind during Christmas dinner.

A shameful 7% have attempted to play St Nick, leaving a less than festive ‘present’ under the Christmas tree for family members to find. And 5% have even gone as far as kidnapping baby Jesus from the nativity scene.

The research also uncovered that one in ten cat and dog owners worry about their pets behaving badly at Christmas. Depsite this, over a quarter (29%) admit that they don’t actually mind that their four-legged friend is a little bit naughty, as their relatives can be equally testing.

Charlotte added: “Gifting relatives and their pet’s fleas is also an issue at Christmas and one that could easily be resolved. Itch’s personalised monthly subscription service means you’ll avoid unwanted guests this Christmas and help to avoid fleas forever.”

Other festive horror stories that emerged from the study include:

  • A naughty feline who brought in a dead rat and placed it on the top of the turkey.
  • One rascal canine who completely destroyed a Grandmother’s boots, meaning she had to be carried out to the car on Christmas Day.
  • A puss that used Auntie’s suitcase as a litter tray, spoiling all of her new Christmas clothes.
  • A respondent’s brother who was armed with presents, was greeted by an excited dog. Welcoming him to the house with an enthusiastic leg hump, the family member dropped the gifts, smashing the glassware inside.
  • A mischievous dog that left his owner unable to eat turkey for 14 years after he ate the whole turkey. His wind was so unbearable, they haven’t been able to eat it since.

The top 20 ‘Crimes’ committed by cats and dogs

1 Damaged decorations

2 Climbed the Christmas tree

3 Knocked over the Christmas tree

4 Stole meat from the chopping board or from someone’s plate

5 Damaged presents

6 Broke wind during Christmas dinner

7 Sat with his ‘lipstick’ out in front of friends/family

8 Inappropriately humped or sniffed a family member

9 Ate a relative’s slipper

10 Brought in a dead animal during Christmas dinner

11 Relieved themselves on the Christmas tree

12 Left a festive ‘present’ under the Christmas tree

13 Relieved themselves on a snowman

14 Tripped up Granny or Grandad

15 Devoured the snacks left out for Santa

16 Chewed Christmas gift cards with money in them

17 Nabbed a character from the nativity scene

18 At the Fairy from the Christmas tree

19 Stole underwear from relatives

20 Brought unwanted guests, giving a relative or relatives’ pet fleas

The Top 12 Festive Felons: The ‘Dirty Dozen’ dog breeds most likely to misbehave at Christmas:

1 Jack Russell

2 Yorkshire Terrier

3 Chihuahua

4 Labrador

5 Springer Spaniel

6 Boxer

7 Mixed Breed

8 German Shepherd

9 Cocker Spaniel

10 French Bulldog

11 Cockapoo

12 Dalmatian


The usual Puss’pects – the top 12 cat breeds most likely to misbehave at Christmas:

1 Siamese

2 British Shorthair

3 Bengal

4 Persian

5 Sphynx

6 Burmese

7 Ragdoll

8 Munchkin cat

9 Maine Coon

10 Oriental

11 Norwegian Forest Cat

12 Russian Blie