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  • Writer's pictureKaaya Sharma

How to have a safe and fun Thanksgiving with your pets

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, knowing safe ways to celebrate the holiday with your pets is important. Although it is always a good idea to give them an extra treat or two on Thanksgiving, their safety should always be a priority. We will address certain food items you should avoid giving to your pet this holiday, as well as other fun ways to celebrate and make it a memorable day for all!

What food items should you avoid?

  1. Turkey. Giving your pets turkey meat, especially in large amounts, can be difficult for your pets to digest. If you decide to give your pet turkey meat, make sure it is only a tiny amount, unseasoned, and not fatty dark meat or skin. It is also important to double-check that there are no bones in their serving because ingesting bones can be hazardous for your pet, causing major internal damage.

  2. Desserts. It is always better to avoid giving your pets dessert during Thanksgiving, especially because many contain chocolate, berries, or xylitol which can be harmful to your pets. Instead, stick to rewarding them with animal-friendly treats from the pet store. If you do decide to give your pet something extra special, make sure to thoroughly research if the item is completely safe before giving it to them.

  3. Seasoned foods. An excessive amount of garlic, onion, chives, and other seasoners can harm your pets. Specifically, these seasonings can disrupt the function of red blood cells in your furry friend’s body. So if you want to treat your pet to something, make sure that it is plain and unseasoned to avoid giving them something their bodies won't appreciate.

What are some other precautions & tips for having a fun Thanksgiving?

  1. Secure the home. If you think your family will get caught up in preparations and celebrating, make sure the house is locked and secure. Usually, exciting times for us humans can be stressful for our pets who are not used to those types of environments. This can cause them to escape, especially if you’re not paying as much attention.

  2. Create a calm and safe environment. If you know your dog can get anxious or stressed easily, make sure that you have a comfortable room or environment set up for them. This is especially important if you know the kitchen might get a little busy and disorderly during Thanksgiving dinner.

  3. Give them a new toy or bone to play with. Even if it is unsafe to give your pets many food items prepared for Thanksgiving, you can still reward them with certain treats we know they love! This gives them something to keep busy when you and your family might be cooking, eating, or celebrating with friends.

  4. Take them for a walk before the festivities start. If you are scared your pet will get anxious when you and your family begin to celebrate, try to take them out for a walk or play with them outside for a little bit before the event. This allows them to do their business and remain content and calm for the rest of the day.

  5. Dress them up! If you and your pet are feeling up to it, dress them up with Thanksgiving-themed outfits or accessories. Of course, don't dress them up in anything they might be uncomfortable with, but as long as they seem happy in their gear, this can be such a fun way to celebrate the holiday with your pet!


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