Thanksgiving is an amazing time of year where we take the time to appreciate and give thanks for the important things in our life. As you gather around the table with your friends and family this Thanksgiving, pay special attention to your pet and keep their safety in mind.
You may want to include your pet in the festivities and spoil them with leftovers, but some Thanksgiving foods may upset their stomach, or worse, they could be toxic and pose a threat to their safety. So before you dole out those scraps, please take a moment to read these Thanksgiving safety tips for pets.
Tip #1: Turkey dos and don’ts
- Go ahead and share a little turkey with your furry friend, but avoid excess skin and fat – white meat is your best pet-friendly option.
- Make sure the turkey is fully cooked and all bones have been removed before sharing.
Tip #2: Avoid sharing onions, garlic, leeks and other alliums
- Whether raw, cooked or in powder form, alliums can be potentially toxic to dogs and cats and can lead to gastric discomfort, pain and anemia.
Tip #3: Mashed potatoes, carrots, green beans, oh my!
- There are many vegetables that are staples around most Thanksgiving tables, and the good news is there are a ton of healthy options your pets can enjoy!
- In addition to those listed in this tip’s title, here are a few more to consider: cauliflower, broccoli, sweet potato, asparagus, celery, lettuce and pumpkin.
Tip #4: Say no to grapes and raisins, but you can say yes to cranberry sauce
- Grapes and raisins contain a toxin that can cause kidney failure in both dogs and cats if ingested.
- Cranberry sauce, on the other hand is just fine – but you’ll want to limit how much you share as it can be high in sugar.
Tip #5: Baking dos and don’ts
- If you’re using sweeteners instead of sugar, make sure not to offer your scrumptious desserts to your pet – sweeteners can contain xylitol which is poisonous for pets.
- Thanksgiving is no exception to the ‘no chocolate’ rule for pets – chocolate, especially baking chocolate, is very toxic and potentially lethal if ingested by your pet.
- If baking your own bread, don’t allow your pets to have any raw dough. When it’s ingested, an animal’s body heat causes the dough to rise in his stomach – as it expands, your pet can become quite sick and bloated and may even require surgery to relieve the pressure.
Help your pet enjoy the holidays just as much as you do. While we’ve listed several safe food choices you can share with pet, you should still follow the ‘everything in moderation’ rule of thumb. If they get too much of any food they’re not used to, they’ll likely end up with an upset stomach, diarrhea or maybe worse – overindulging can lead to pancreatitis.
If you want to play it really safe, you could always pick up a new chew bone or toy from your local pet store. Your pet will be just as happy to have something special you brought home just for him.