Keep Dogs Safe on Thanksgiving

Avoid an unplanned trip to the veterinarian over the holiday weekend by taking a few precautionary measures.

As many celebrate a long holiday weekend with turkeys roasting and friends and family visiting, holiday dangers lurk for dogs. To ensure it’s a safe and happy Thanksgiving for all, pet owners should take a few extra precautions on behalf of their dogs.

Avoid feeding dogs table scraps. Sudden diet changes can cause upset stomachs, and feeding pets greasy foods and sweets can overwhelm their digestive systems causing vomiting and diarrhea. Cooked turkey bones can splinter, and if ingested, can cause serious injury to a pet’s intestinal tract.

And while baking holiday breads, ensure the dough is kept away from dogs. When dough is ingested the pets’ body heat causes the dough to rise and expand, which can result in abdominal pain, bloat, vomiting, disorientation, and depression, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

In addition to health risks, extra treats can add unhealthy pounds to a pet’s frame – keep dogs’ nutritional goals in mind to avoid holiday weight gain.

Inform guests of pet’s house rules. Let visitors know the house rules for feeding dogs table scraps or treats and jumping on furniture in an effort to keep pets safe and on track with their normal routines.

Take extra precautions with candles. Dogs who bump into furniture or swiftly run past a candle may knock it over and start a house fire. Keep candles in a location where pets cannot get near them.

Secure trash bins. Pets may try to get into the trash and dig for holiday leftovers. Keep trash lids tightly closed and in locations where they can’t be tipped over.

Keep tabs on pets’ whereabouts. With holiday visitors coming and going, dogs have ample opportunity to escape through the front door. In the event pets do get out, ensure all their identification tags and vaccinations are up-to-date.

By implementing a few precautionary measures, Thanksgiving feasts and festivities can continue while emergency veterinary clinic visits are kept at bay.


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Pat   Tustin, CA

11/20/2010 1:03:56 PM

Thank you for the tips on keeping our precious pets safe on Thanksgiving. The one about dough I did not know and appreciative the heads up on that one. I would like to warn the lady who gives turkey and dressing to her pet, that I, personally, would say no to that. The stuffing probably contains fat of some kind, seasonings and maybe onions which are a definite no, no to pets. Hope she reads this.

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mandy   grove city, OH

11/20/2010 9:08:18 AM

Thanks for this. It's really useful. I never would have thought not to give a dog dough.

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John   San Jose, CA

11/19/2010 3:16:45 PM

Great article and just in time for the holiday season.

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Margaret   Edisto Island, SC

11/19/2010 12:23:40 PM

I don't know why visitors have such a problem with rules for feeding pets - "oh, it,s just a little bite, it won't hurt him"...all it takes is one time and you have your dog begging every time you eat; not to speak of the digestive upsets this causes the dog.

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