Spending a day with our loved ones is something we cherish here at the Humane Society of Greater Dayton, but we want to encourage all of you to not overlook your pets on this day of thanks. Please keep your pets in mind especially when it comes to preparing your traditional Thanksgiving feast. Although some food items may be a staple to your family around the dinner table, they can be harmful to your pets. Here are a few things to keep in mind this Thanksgiving.
Give Them a Safe Haven
A full house of family and friends may be overwhelming to your pet. Make sure to have a safe place for your pets to retreat to if they feel scared. Set a room aside for them that is quiet and free of people. You can also have some calming music playing in the room to help your pet tune out the noise from your gathering. Make sure to have things that are familiar to your pet in the room including their bed, toys, food and water.
Watch for Bones
Your pet may like a nibble or two of turkey this Thanksgiving and that is OK. However, make sure that your turkey is fully cooked and boneless. Raw or undercooked turkey can hold salmonella bacteria, which can be harmful to your pet. Small bones can also be a choking hazard for your pet if consumed. In fact, both turkey and ham bones can splinter in your dog’s digestive tract, which can lead to an emergency visit to your vet. Dispose of bones carefully and keep them away from your pets!
Not All Spices are Nice
Sage can make any ho-hum stuffing taste amazing, but this spice along with others contain essential oils and resins that can make your pet’s stomach upset if eaten in large quantities. Cats are very sensitive to these essential oils. Other seasonal spices like nutmeg, which can be found in pumpkin spice, can cause seizures or central nervous system problems in dogs. Make sure to leave the spices out when giving your pets a Thanksgiving treat.
Say No to Dough
When it comes to raw dough, simply tell your pets no. When a pet eats raw dough, their natural body temperature causes the dough to rise in their stomachs. As the dough expands, the dog may experience things such as severe abdominal pain, bloating and even vomiting, which can become life-threatening. If your pet accidentally eats the dough, contact your vet immediately.
With so many yummy treats available this Thanksgiving, remember that moderation is key. It is completely OK to give your dog or cat a few nibbles of Thanksgiving dinner as a treat, but too much of a good thing could lead to stomach upset or diarrhea for your pet. A great way to include your pets would be to give them a special pet-friendly treat or fill their Kong with a little bit of the Thanksgiving meal (go for plain turkey, sweet potato or plain green beans). This way you can avoid them begging for scraps at the dinner table and they can enjoy a little of the meal without overindulging! For exotic pets like rabbits, birds, or reptiles, a little bit of 100% pure pumpkin is a great treat for them to enjoy and be thankful for.
ID Your Pets
The stress from holidays can make a scared pet bolt right out of an open door. Make sure your pets have proper identification at all times. Have an identification tag with contact information on them so if they get out, they can be identified. In addition, get your pets microchipped. If their collar breaks away, they can still be identified and returned to you if found. You can stop by the Humane Society of Greater Dayton during our regular open hours and have your pets microchipped. It only costs $20 and takes just minutes to do. No appointments are required!