November 12, 2009

Thanksgiving Pet Hazards

Wooooof! That ooh so sweet aroma of a fresh mouthwatering roasting turkey, cornbread stuffing and that sweet, spicy pumpkin pie teasing your scavenger doggy lips? Yum Yum!

Remember that although this is the season of giving…you do NOT want to end up giving your vet a visit!

No matter what kind of diet your pet is on, Thanksgiving is not the time to change that diet. Remember that any NEW food diet introduced should be done in a controlled manner. Not under the table!

"Pets Out-Of-The-Kitchen" Rule
The kitchen will be ground zero for children and pet hazards the days prior, of and following Thanksgiving. Tripping, counter surfing, and burn hazards make the kitchen an accident waiting to happen. Prevention is your best asset. No access No Problem!
See Thanksgiving Fire Hazards for more convincing!

Secure Your Garbage
Every hazard listed here below will in some shape or form end up in the trash. Pets can get in trouble not only with the food they scavenge away but also with the wrappings, such as aluminum foil, tin foil, plastic wrap, wax paper, meat strings etc. The swallowing of such coverings can cause intestinal obstruction.

Fire Hazards
Watch out for the decorations. Pets are curious and new items lying around the house might attract their fancy. Candles should be placed away from the reach of children (2 legged) and pets….beware of the super Wag’N pet and the new fancy candles…pet fur can singe your pet’s fur in a Wag’N minute!

Table Scraps/Sudden Diet Change Hazards
Rich, fatty foods (turkey skins, gravy, etc,) can contribute to pancreatitis. This inflammation of the digestive gland is painful and can be serious--requiring emergency veterinary assistance.

If you think that left over would be unhealthy for you it will be unhealthy for your pet!

Bone Hazards
Remember that cooked turkey, duck, geese and other bird bones are dangerous to your pet. These bones are generally are hollow and break and splinter easily. Because they are so easily breakable, dogs usually won't chew them thoroughly….especially if they end up playing chase or catch with the Turkey! When swallowed, the sharp pieces can choke the dog or block, tear the intestines. A pet that has a bone or fragment of one lodged in his intestine may not even show symptoms for a few days. When they do occur they may include loss of appetite, depression, vomiting, or diarrhea. Sometimes the bone will pass by itself; other times it may need to be surgically removed. So make sure all leftovers and throw away and out of your pets' reach!

Dessert Hazards
CHOCOLATE, macadamia nuts & grapes/raisins are poisonous to dogs, cats & ferrets! Just make sure your pet only trick or treats for pet cookies. Human candy can be extremely dangerous to your pet!

Train Your Guests
So you’ve implemented all those rules. Great! The only problem left are the people that don’t know the rules, including kids and adult guests. Maybe because the spirit of sharing and the guest guilt kick in they will have that tendency to “satisfy that puppy face” Seriously a no no. You know the hazards and you know your pet’s tricks best. Train your guests. Let them know the pet already ate and that feeding without your permission will cause more harm than good.

Wag'N Recommendations

>> Like for all big celebrations maintain your pet’s feeding and exercise schedule … unless it conflicts with the hazards…pets like their routine. You may want to extend the walk to ensure that all excessive energy is dissipated on younger dogs.

>> Make sure you provide enough water for them. Some pets deal with stress by drinking a bit more. Others chose destruction to get attention and pacify themselves. Give your pet something to do. That does not mean leave pet in non attended room with a rawhide! There are plenty safer toys such as Kongs, Treat Dispensing Chew Toys (Pet stage puppy occupy, Puzzler Treat, Woofie Wobbler, Busy Buddy, etc) and Pacifying Toys (like rope toys, Nylabones).

…Note that you purchase non-flavored rope toys and flavor them yourself by letting them sit in watered down tuna water etc (just keep the sodium and fatty levels low) then freeze it and provide it frozen…

>> Make sure that they get a quiet refuge away from “guest commotion”. A crate or a room where they can rest and not be bothered in. Make sure they have access to water. This also gets back to the “Training Your Guests” to make sure everyone knows to give the pet space in that safe zone.

Foods to Keep Away From Your Pets
- Turkey fat
- Poultry Skin
- Bones from fish, meat, or poultry (turkey included)
- Uncooked meat, fish, and poultry
- Onions in holiday stuffing may lead to canine anemia
- Garlic
- Raisins and Grapes toxins can cause kidney failure in pets
- Macadamia nuts
- Uncooked yeast dough
- Alcohol
- Coffee/Tea
- Alcohol
- Rich, fatty foods (gravy, grease, chips)
- Sweets (especially chocolate)


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