The thought of the holidays, especially Thanksgiving, brings happiness to our hearts as we anticipate the arrival of friends and relatives. Thanksgiving is the holiday where we think about those closest to us. We don't have to think about gifts yet. We can simply enjoy the food and fellowship with those we hold dear to our hearts, people and pets alike. As the holiday roles near, our thoughts pool around who is to bring what food, making sure our best outfits are ready, and in the case of traveling, where did we store the suitcases last year. If there are pets in the family, there needs to be some thought given to their safety during the Thanksgiving holiday.
Keep To The Routine
In the case of dogs and cats, they are used to the daily family routine. They know where their food is kept and where their bed and toys are. Any change in their surroundings or what they are used to, can bring about some anxiety and cause behavior problems. In addition to changes in routine, holidays present hidden problems that can be prevented if thought about ahead of time.
Be Careful What You Share With Your Pet
Sharing food with pets just seems to go with the territory during the holidays. However go easy on feeding them too much people food. This is especially true of poultry bones. Many a veterinarian has spent their Thanksgiving pulling these sharp bones out of a dog's throat, gums or even the roof of the mouth.
Another slightly unknown "no no" for feeding animals is onions and onion powder. Since this is a food found in much of the Thanksgiving fare, such as the stuffing, monitor it and other sides that may have onions as an ingredient. Onions have the potential to damage your dog or cat's red blood cells, which can then lead to anemia.
Some herbs that are commonly used in Thanksgiving meals, such as sage, actually contain essential oils and resins that will cause gastrointestinal upset and central nervous system depression in your cat or dog, especially if they eat too much of it. Certain essential oils can be quite lethal to cats.
Never give your dog raw bread dough. When a dog eats raw bread dough, their internal body temperature makes the dough rise inside their stomach. Due to the expansion of the dough, a dog may have severe stomach cramps, bloating and vomiting - all requiring prompt veterinary care.
Decorations need to be checked for pet safety before being used. It is hard to know what such things as candles, wreaths or potpourri are made from. The adhesive, hidden behind pine cones and plastic turkeys sitting on that table decoration, could cause seizures or even kill your pet. Even hard plastic items can be picked up by your pet and used as a chew toy. The sharp chewed pieces can be disastrous in the throat or stomach of your four legged friend. Checking for every possible danger can be really hard to do, but is certainly a necessity.
Those pretty glass candy bowls or figurines are best kept away from wagging tails that could knock them crashing to the floor. Cleaning up shards of glass to prevent pet paws from being cut is something you don't want to spend your time doing in the midst of the Thanksgiving festivities.
Stress around the holidays is often difficult for humans to handle. This Thanksgiving, take a minute to consider what may keep your dog or cat from becoming frazzled. A quick look around the house, inside and out, could save your pets life. Work together with your children, family and friends to share these tips on how to keep your pet safe during these hectic, fun holidays. Your pets will thank you for it.
Photo Credit: Gailf548