Happy Holidays for You and Your Dog

The snow may not be snowing yet, and going over the river and through the woods to grandmother’s house maybe a few weeks away, but the Holidays are coming! Now is the best time to start thinking about preparing for a safe and happy vet free holiday season, while you still have some time to think.

Thanksgiving is a wonderful time of the year and food is the prime preoccupation in the minds of most folks and dogs! The wonderful smells and the great treats are enough to drive even the most stalwart dieter mad.

It is a time of good cheer and benevolent feelings and people tend to give their pets or pets of their friends extra treats thinking they are being kind to the dog! Whoops! Wrong thinking. Why!

It matters not if you think of your dog as your child, your dog’s tummy is not the same as a human stomach, no matter what you think. Their gastrointestinal system was not made to handle the amount of fat, spices, and butter that our human systems can. Dog’s for the most part have a diet that is almost the same day after boring day and they like it like that. The wonderful foods of Thanksgiving can give your dog a bad case of diarrhea or cause your dog to vomit all over the place.

I know you want the day to be special for you dog, too! Well, it can be if you are a wise dog owner. Remember, your dog does not know about all the goodies are available and sitting on the table. Your puppy will be overjoyed to get some potatoes minus the butter and gravy, some carrots or green beans would be great too and you can throw in a bit of turkey.

In the spirit of the day, do not feed your dog from the table this can create a wonderful new habit of begging, when you sit down to dinner a few days later. No! No! Put the extra treats in your dog’s regular dish! Honest, you dog will not know it is a holiday and expect special treatment.

Such things as garlic and onions can cause a blood disorder, if given in sufficient amounts can cause hemolytic anemia in which the blood cells actually burst. Raisins and grapes in sufficient amounts can cause kidney failure. Chocolate can cause heart complications. Depending on the type of chocolate fed to a dog it can be lethal. So make a rule “no chocolate” for the dog no matter how much he/she begs. The life you save maybe your dog’s.

Macadamia nuts and avocados are also a no no.

When throwing away the carcasses of the turkey or chicken, make certain that the carcasses cannot be dug out of the trash by your pet. Cooked poultry bones can splinter and cause serious internal problems.

At Thanksgiving time give thanks for the joy your pet has brought you, but keep the treats on the table and your dog’s bowl filled with his usual food.

As a precautionary measure it would not hurt to keep the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Hotline number posted by your telephone – 1-888/426-4435.

Happy Thanksgiving

Top 10 dog gifts at Drs. Foster & Smith