Our all-American holiday is just around the corner, and ‘tis a time for family and friends, food and fellowship, and gratitude for our blessings. Atop that list? Our furry four-legged pals. As we celebrate and give thanks, please heed these tips to make Thanksgiving a safe, relaxed, and happy day for your pup, too.
Do go for the burn.
We’re not talkin’ turkey, but helping your pal burn off excess energy will encourage manageable behavior and encourage their own belly-up brand of post-feast coma. Tire them out early and you’ll be thankful later.
Do know what to share.
Is turkey safe for dogs? For all those bird dogs, a little treat of cooked meat is just fine. Bones, skin, fat drippings, innards (although they’d likely love ‘em) — not so much. Most veggies get the green light but make sure to follow these guidelines. And as always, steer clear of items high in fat or sugar.
Do be aware of these dangers.
Foods like chocolate, onion, garlic, walnuts, raisins. The oh-so-tempting carcass. An easily accessed cocktail or glass of beer or wine. Unattended trash cans. Long tuggable tablecloths. Lit candles in low places. Guests coming and going — and not noticing Fido is doing the same.
Don’t ignore body language.
Dogs can wig out with a houseful, so pay attention if yours is yawning, drooling, shaking, moping, hiding, or just acting up. Sometimes the best place for them is away from the action. Keep them happy and occupied with a bone or other chewable goodie or a mentally challenging toy or treat.
Don’t let ‘em be anonymous.
In the midst of all the celebrating — or napping — dogs can slip out undetected. Be sure your pal is wearing up-to-date ID tags and is microchipped. This is especially important if you’re in an area unfamiliar to them.
Don’t forget about these resources.
For pups who may have woofed down something they shouldn’t have, contact Pet Poison Helpline, a 24/7 Animal Poison Control Center. For dogs on the run, contact Lost Dogs MN or The Retrievers. Their dedicated volunteers will hit the streets and work social media on your behalf.