Lifestyle

The dog days of Christmas

Mallorie Ekstrom prompts 1-year-old Lebowski as Fiona Gohery photographs the dog with Santa at Durty Harry’s pet boutique in Brookline during a benefit for All Dog Rescue.
Mallorie Ekstrom prompts 1-year-old Lebowski as Fiona Gohery photographs the dog with Santa at Durty Harry’s pet boutique in Brookline during a benefit for All Dog Rescue.Credit: Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff

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You think you’re overbooked during the holidays? Be glad you’re not a dog.

Between photos with Santa, doggie day care parties, fur blowouts, charitable commitments, and playing peacemaker at dysfunctional-family get-togethers, some canines are busier than people. There are antlers to model. Christmas cards to star in. Instragram poses to strike. Gifts to make.

“It used to be the kids who were overscheduled, now it’s the dogs,” said Julie Klam, the author of the memoir “You Had Me at Woof: How Dogs Taught Me the Secrets of Happiness.”

Consider Shale Bernstein, a four-year-old border collie from Winthrop. Last year she “hosted” a holiday party for four dogs (and their owners). But with Thanksgiving falling so late this year, her regular swimming and agility lessons, and volunteer work as a “dog ambassador” at Ravenswood Park in Gloucester, who can find a free weekend?

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