Christmas Countdown

159 days, 13 hours, 35 minutes, 31 seconds until Santa arrives.

About the Reindeers


Here are some fun questions Santa has received about the reindeers.


Why do biologists say Santa's team is probably made up of female reindeer? Is that true?
dancer-rc.jpgSanta understands why biologists would say this. Normally all "males" lose their antlers by late November. The "females", lose theirs in early spring. So it is understandable why biologists say that Santa's teams is all pulled by "female" reindeers.

Actually the team is made up of both females, called cows (Dancer, Vixen, Cupid and Blitzen), and males, called bulls (Dasher, Prancer, Comet, Donder and Rudolph).

It has to do with that special secret diet which makes the reindeer fly. It seems to help the bulls keep theirs antlers a little longer, until Santa stop feeding them just after Christmas. The cows, who normally have slightly smaller antlers, growth a little fuller.

What is in the special secret diet?
HoHoHo, it's a secret! But Santa can tell you that it is all made of natural ingredients found only in the entire Arctic regions, near the North Pole.

Will I be able to fly if I eat the reindeer food? That would be cool!
prancer-rc.jpgAnd fun! But unfortunately, no. And how does Santa know this? Well I tried it once. Santa thought that if I could fly, it would help deliver all those presents a little quicker. Alas, the only thing that happened was that Santa started to grow antlers himself! It took a few days for them to fall off my forehead. Prancer found it so funny that he could not stop laughing for two days. Lucky for Santa that no one took a picture!

Are all reindeers able to fly?
Very good question. No. Santa found out that only a few reindeers are able to fly.

Which of the reindeers was the first to try the diet?
vixen-rc.jpgVixen was the first to try it. I wished that cameras were invented way back then. The look in hers eyes as she started to float up was hilarious! I have never seen eyes that big before on a reindeer. But she was the quickest in learning to fly. She helped coach all the other reindeers, including Rudolph when he became part of the team years later.

Is it the diet that makes Rudolph’s nose turn red?
HoHoHo! No, Rudolph was born with that beautiful shiny red nose.

Are there other reindeers that have red noses?
rudolph-rc.jpgOnly Rudolph.

Fun fact: Did you know that when it get really cold, reindeers are able to warm the air they inhale through their noses? The nose has several areas, called cavities, that fill up with blood which than warms the air. That is why you might see pictures of reindeers with a reddish nose in winter. When the weather gets warmer, the blood leaves the nose.

What is the difference between a caribou and a reindeer?
comet-rc.jpgGreat question! Basically, they are one and the same. It is more or less where they are from. Caribous come from the North America region; Canada, Greenland and the United-States. Reindeers are from Europe and Asia; Sweden, Finland, Norway, Russia and Siberia. Because Santa once lived in Europe a long time ago, I only knew of the term reindeers. The caribous on the team got use to me calling them reindeers and they do not mind at all. They are so nice to me!

How did Santa choose the reindeers to pull his sleigh?
Wonderful question! It was through tryouts, to see which of the reindeers were able to fly, were not afraid of heights, who were the fastest, strongest, and most important, nicest.

Why did you give those names to the reindeers?
Santa did not named the reindeers. The reindeers already had names and they told me! Actually they told the elves who then told me. Elves and reindeers are able to communicate to each other.

Are all the reindeers the same?
blitzen-rc.jpgWhat a wonder question! There are several different species of reindeers. The team is made up of reindeers from various parts of the Arctic region. Dasher is a Boreal caribou from Alaska. Dancer is a Finnish reindeer, from Finland. Prancer is a Barren grounds caribou, from Greenland. Vixen is a Kamchatka reindeer from Siberia. Comet is a Mountain from Norway. Cupid is a Peary caribou from Nunavut. Donder and Blitzen are in fact twins. They are Labrador caribous from Canada. Rudolph is a Busk reindeer from Northern Russia.

Is there really a reindeer named Olive?
Why yes there is! Olive, a cow, is a Svalbard reindeer from Norway. She pulls Mrs. Claus’ sleigh around the North Pole when Mrs. Claus visits the elves and bring them cookies and hot chocolate. Olive is very cute as well, but she is not able to fly. But she runs really fast! Zoom!

Do all the reindeers live at the North Pole?
dasher-rc.jpgMost of the reindeers will leave a few days after Christmas to visit their families during the winter months. By late spring, their all back. The only one who stays with us is Dasher. You see, Dasher was an orphan. Santa found him when he was a very little calf, in Alaska, and brought him home. Since then Dasher has always stayed close to Mrs. Claus and myself.

Do the reindeers ever get sick?
Yes, as with all other living creatures. Santa has learnt how to take care of all the reindeers. But when they are really sick, Santa brings them to a veterinarian, a secret place in Nunavut, Canada.

Who is your favorite reindeer? I love Rudolph!
cupid-rc.jpgHoHoHo that is a very popular question. I love them all!

Let Santa it put this way: If you got all the people you love, mom, dad, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins and your pet, in one room and you were asked “Who is your favorite?”, Santa would think that you would find it hard to choose. Same for Santa. Now image if they all disappeared from that room, you would feel lonely. That is how Santa would feel if one of the reindeers or elves were no longer there.

What do reindeers like to eat? Do they like treats?
Reindeers are herbivores, so they eat mostly leafy greens, wild grass, mushroom and berries. They LOVE lichen, sometimes called "Reindeer moss" As for the threats, they like apples and love carrots. So next Christmas, you can leave a plateful of carrots. Don’t forget the cookies for Santa. Thank you!

Don't they get tired?
donner-rc.jpgThe reindeers all train for many months before the big night. They fly around everywhere around the World, getting flour and sugar for the cookies, wood and plastic for making the toys and paper and ink to make the wrapping paper. But at the end, when all the toys have been delivered, the reindeers will come into my bedroom and all, myself included, will fall asleep until it is time for Christmas supper.

Are the Reindeers real?
You bet! Who do you think pulls Santa’s sleigh filled with wonderful gifts? It’s Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet Cupid, Donner, Blitzen and… Rudolph! Have you ever seen a delivery truck on top of somebody’s house?



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