Turkey - Skin, bones, meat that has been seasoned, dark meat
Onions, Garlic, Scallions and Shallots
Grapes and Raisins
Nuts - Walnuts, Pecans, Macadamia Nuts
Nutmeg & Sage
Yeast dough and uncooked cake batter
Pies and other desserts
UNSEASONED Turkey meat, light only
Mashed or baked potatoes
A Special Treat Made with Dog Safe Ingredients
Homemade Treats for Your Best Friend
Know what foods and plants and other items are dangerous to your pet. Contact your vet or Pet Poison Hotline in an emergency. 855-764-7661 or 888-426-4435
Keep your dog away from the table and don't allow guests to feed your dog anything from the table.
Watch the door! Keep your dog safe while guests are coming and going.
Plan ahead for parties! Having new people in and out can be overwhelming so have a place for your pet to be comfortable. It can be a crate, a spare room or bathroom, or work with friends to coordinate "play dates" for pooches while hosting events. Take turns hosting the play dates so your pets are happy and you can have fun with your guests.
Stick to a routine for your pet. Remember he lives with you everyday and depends on you
AHHHHH! It's the holidays!!!
Time for being with your family and friends sharing laughter, memories and of course, food. As we overindulge all of our senses at Thanksgiving, keep a few thoughts focused on your fur baby’s health and well-being. All of the festivities can be very hard on your furry friend. Below you will find things that you should watch for during the season and reasons why they are dangerous to your pet. A simplified list is also available for a quick check.
From food to guests, the holidays can be scary. Even something as simple as a floral arrangement can cause heartache. So, let’s start with the meal.
Turkey is a huge part of many of our Thanksgiving meals. Keep in mind that just a small bite of under-cooked turkey can contain harmful bacteria. As you bake your turkey, be sure you keep small pieces off the floor along with the bones while prepping the food. Crispy turkey skin is a favorite of mine as well as many members of my family. Who doesn’t love that crunch with all of the seasonings that bring the flavor? Many of the flavors that bring back the childhood memories for us are harmful to your pet. Did you know that fatty foods, such as turkey skin, are hard for your dog to digest and can cause a life threatening illness called pancreatitis?
Other common food items that can be detrimental this holiday season are onions, garlic, raisins and grapes. Some of these items can cause damage to red blood cells. Seasonings such as nutmeg and sage can be highly dangerous to pets. This means no pumpkin pie! While on the subject of pie, don’t allow your pet to eat raw bread dough or pies or other desserts. Particularly chocolate. When considering how to prepare your meals, also remember that Xylitol for sugar-free desserts can be deadly.
Next are nuts, including walnuts, pecans and macadamia nuts. In general nuts are not good for dogs as they are high in fats. Large nuts like walnuts and pecans are hard for the dog to digest and can cause stomach upset. Macadamia nuts are toxic and have been known to cause neurological problems.
If you want to provide your best friend with a special treat, there are a couple of options. One is to make your dog a holiday-themed treat. Find a simple dog treat recipe on the internet and use a turkey shaped cookie cutter for style. Unseasoned turkey, cranberry and sweet potato can make a good treat as well. To add to the festive treat, try putting it in a toy and allowing your pet to figure out how to get to the treat. There are special toys for just this type of fun. Such as Pet Zone IQ Treat Ball or Outward Hound Ottosson Puzzle Brick Dog Toy.
Once the holiday meal is over, be sure you pack your leftovers appropriately! Do not allow your pet to have bones and carcasses to chew on as they can damage the digestive tract.
NON-FOOD HOLIDAY THOUGHTS
Decorations Be careful with decorative plants. Don’t forget that some flowers and festive plants can be toxic to pets. These include amaryllis, Baby’s Breath, Sweet William, some ferns, hydrangeas and more. There are several lists of plants that are toxic to both dogs and cats, but the safest route is simply to keep your pets away from all plants and table decorations. Check your plant list here.
Quick action can save lives. If you believe your pet has been poisoned or eaten something it shouldn’t have, call your veterinarian or local veterinary emergency clinic immediately. You may also want to call the Pet Poison Control Helpline: (855) 764-7661. Here is some further information on poisoning.
Signs of pet distress can include: sudden changes in behavior, depression, pain, vomiting, or diarrhea. Contact your veterinarian immediately.
Precautions for Parties If you’re hosting a party or overnight visitors, plan ahead to keep your pets safe and make the experience less stressful for everyone.
Visitors can upset your pets. Some pets are shy or excitable around new people or in crowds, and Thanksgiving often means many visitors at once and higher-than-usual noise and activity levels. If you know your dog or cat is nervous when people visit your home, put him/her in another room or a crate with a favorite toy. This will reduce the emotional stress on your pet and protect your guests from possible injury. If your pet is particularly upset by house guests, talk to your veterinarian about possible solutions to this common problem. Another great idea is to plan “play dates” with other pet parents. Host a pet party while your friend has their celebration and trade out dates so each family can celebrate and keep their fur babies comfortable.
If any of your guests have compromised immune systems (due to pregnancy, some diseases, or medications or treatments that suppress the immune system), make sure they’re aware of the pets (especially exotic pets) in your home so they can take extra precautions to protect themselves.
Watch the exits. Even if your pets are comfortable around guests, make sure you watch them closely, especially when people are entering or leaving your home. While you’re welcoming hungry guests and collecting coats, a four-legged family member may make a break for the door and become lost. Identification tags and microchips reunite families. Make sure your pet has proper identification with your current contact information – particularly a microchip with up-to-date, registered information. That way, if they do sneak out, they’re more likely to be returned to you. If your pet isn’t already microchipped, talk to your veterinarian about the benefits of this simple procedure.
Watch your pets around festive decorations. Special holiday displays or candles are attractive to pets as well as people. Never leave a pet alone in an area with a lit candle; it could result in a fire. And pine cones, needles and other decorations can cause intestinal blockages or even perforate an animal’s intestine if eaten.
Travel Concerns Whether you take your pets with you or leave them behind, take these precautions to safeguard them when traveling over the Thanksgiving holiday or at any other time of the year.
Your pet needs a health certificate from your veterinarian if you’re traveling across state lines or international borders, whether by air or car. Learn the requirements for any states you will visit or pass through and schedule an appointment with your veterinarian to get the needed certificate within the time frames required by those states.
Never leave pets alone in vehicles, even for a short time, regardless of the weather.
Pets should always be safely restrained in vehicles. This means using a secure harness or a carrier, placed in a location clear of airbags. This helps protect your pets if you brake or swerve suddenly or get in an accident; it keeps them away from potentially poisonous food or other items you are transporting; helps prevent them from causing dangerous distractions for the driver; and can prevent small animals from getting trapped in small spaces. Never transport your pet in the bed of a truck. Keep a leash near your animal in the event of an accident should someone need to care for your pet in an emergency.
Talk with your veterinarian if you’re traveling by air and considering bringing your pet with you. Air travel can put pets at risk, especially short-nosed dogs. Your veterinarian is the best person to advise you regarding your own pet’s ability to travel.
Pack for your pet as well as yourself if you’re going to travel together. In addition to your pet’s food and medications, this includes bringing medical records, information to help identify your pet if it becomes lost, first aid supplies, and other items.
Are you considering boarding your dog while you travel? Talk with your veterinarian to find out how best to protect your pet from canine flu and other contagious diseases, and to make sure your pet is up-to-date on vaccines. Choose a reputable kennel with caring staff and sufficient room for your pet and can meet your pet’s needs. Ask friends, relatives, or your veterinary staff about reputable kennels in your area.
You are your pet’s life. So be sure to care for yourself as well as your pet this holiday season. Be safe, responsible and enjoy your holidays!