Thanksgiving is such a wonderful and meaningful holiday. Families and friends excitedly gather to show their gratitude for all they are so fortunate to have. Ovens are working overtime and delicious holiday aromas fill the air.
During this happy time of family, food and giving, people tend to become overly generous with their pets. This means that dogs and cats will get a lot of table food scraps. Sometimes, however, too many treats can lead to injury, illness, or worse, for our pets.
Here are just a few tips to help with the holiday season, and always...
1. Fatty Foods: Too many fatty, rich, or unfamiliar foods can give your pet pancreatitis or gastroenteritis; two medical conditions that can be very painful and even life-threatening.
2. Diet and Exercise: Maintain your pet's regular meal and exercise schedule and avoid too many holiday leftovers. A disruption in his dietary routine can cause stomach upset, diarrhea and/or vomiting.
3. Bones: Make no bones about it. Certain bones can lacerate or obstruct your pets' insides. Save the bones for the broth - not your dog.
4. Onions: Onions and onion powder, widely found in stuffing and used as a general seasoning, will destroy your dog or cat's red blood cells, which can lead to anemia.
5. Grapes and Raisins: Grapes and raisins contain a toxin that can cause kidney damage to both dogs and cats.
6. Chocolate: Chocolate can actually be fatal to your dog or cat; so all those sweets must be kept well out of reach.
7. Food Wrappings: Aluminum foil, wax paper and other food wrappings can cause intestinal obstruction. Make sure to place these items securely in the garbage.
8. Fresh Water: Make sure your pet always has fresh water. When there are more people in the house, there's more chance to bump into the water bowl leaving your pet dry.
9. Quiet Time: Make sure your pet has a quiet retreat should the holiday festivities be too much for him. Watch his behavior to make sure he is not stressed.
10. Garbage: Keep an eye on the garbage and keep it securely fastened! If your dog gets into it, he may think he's hit the jackpot, but all he'll be winning is health problems from something as simple as gastric disturbance, vomiting and diarrhea to the worst-case scenario - death.
A few more tips to remember...
Turkey (or any meat)...All meat should be well cooked and always boneless.
Sage...Cats are especially sensitive to this herb, it can cause stomach upset and central nervous system depression.
Bread dough...Raw dough could actually rise in your pets sensitive tummy causing discomfort or an even more serious emergency.
Cake batter...Raw eggs can cause salmonella infection in your pet, just as it can for anyone in your family. Stick to dog biscuits and kitty treats instead of this sugary concoction.
Too much of anything...Little tastes of human food could cause stomach pains, diarrhea and even pancreatitis in your pet. The same goes for you, you should both practice moderation!
Wrappings...Dispose of aluminum foil, plastic wrap and wax paper. While licking up food left on these wrappings pets can ingest some of the wrapper, leading to intestinal obstructions. Also, look out for tooth picks, skewers and used silverware.
Hot food...When carrying hot food from the stove or to the table, be sure you pet/pets arent taking that moment to weave through your legs.