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Thanksgiving Safety Tips for Pets

The Thanksgiving holiday is just around the corner, and it’s an absolute blast to include your pet in the festivities. Just make sure they stay safe—you don’t want your holiday ruined by a pet emergency! Use these tips from your Temecula, CA vet to keep your animal companion safe and sound:

Stick to Pet Food

All sorts of potentially harmful foods are floating around on Thanksgiving, from fatty items, grapes, raisins, and salt to onions, chocolate, candies, and caffeinated items. It’s best to keep your pet on his or her regular diet for the holiday; if you must give them a special Thanksgiving treat, offer a small strip of fully-cooked turkey meat or a dab of plain mashed potatoes. (Skip the gravy, butter, and salt!)

Beware of Bones

Think twice before offering your pet a turkey bone to munch on. Bones—both cooked and uncooked—can splinter when chewed, creating razor-sharp shards that can lacerate a pet’s mouth or puncture the stomach lining. Chunks of bone can also present a choking hazard or cause intestinal obstruction. Instead of a bone, offer your pet a chew toy or food puzzle toy.

Watch the Garbage

Your holiday garbage bag is a treasure trove of tempting things for pets, but there are undoubtedly plenty of hazards as well. Garbage bags might contain toxic foods, bones, coffee grounds, and other harmful materials that a pet could access should they rip open the bag. To be safe, either stash the bag in another room where your pet doesn’t have access or put it inside of another plastic container.

Decoration Dangers

Do you decorate your home with pumpkins, gourds, or fall corn around the Thanksgiving holiday? While these items aren’t necessarily toxic, they can give a pet an upset stomach or cause vomiting and diarrhea if too much is ingested. Plus, pieces of these decorative plants could cause intestinal blockage or cause a pet to choke. If your pet is the nibbling type, you may want to consider removing these decorations from your home or placing them where pets can’t reach.

Avoid Anxiety

Set up a “safe zone” in a back bedroom, complete with a pet bed, a soft blanket or pillow, and a few toys. Lead your pet there if you see them becoming overwhelmed by the hustle and bustle of the holiday festivities.

Ask your Temecula, CA veterinarian for more holiday safety tips.

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