Happy Thanksgiving! No doubt many of you are busy, busy, busy, knee deep in preparations for the big event which, for the last 19 years has been the case with me. This year, however, my sister is excited to take on "Turkey Day" and I will not have to worry about the fact my home is covered in a thin layer of dog fur or picking up after my family. This year, the only thing I need to pick up is a few pies from Marie Callendar's. As a vegetarian, those pies, the Haagen Dazs and the green bean casserole were the highlights anyway. But let's discuss our dogs for a second. I assumed since so many dog foods are turkey based and turkey is a very gentle protein that doesn't cause the allergies of say, beef or chicken, it was perfectly healthy for dogs. Also, with most of us wanting to indulge our pets with human "living foods" and not just processed food, "table scraps" can actually be a great thing. They key is HOW MUCH and WHAT KIND. So, here are some tips for enjoying a DOG-FRIENDLY Thanksgiving.
TIPS FOR A TURKEY SAFE THANKSGIVING:
🦃 Keep the Dogs outside, in a bedroom or in a safe place. If you have a dog run, kennel, or crate, your best bet is to keep the dog safely inside it until all of the food has been put away and the scraps and bones disposed of. It's impossible to keep an eye on the dogs with guests coming and going and food everywhere. DON’T LEAVE UNCOOKED TURKEY UNATTENDED ON THE KITCHEN COUNTER – THE SMELL IS TOO TEMPTING FOR YOUR DOG. RAW MEAT MAY CONTAIN HARMFUL BACTERIA, AND TURKEY BONES COULD EITHER CHOKE YOUR DOG OR BREAK/SPLINTER WHILST HE’S EATING THEM. BROKEN BONES CAN TEAR, OR GET STUCK IN, ANY PART OF YOUR DOG’S GASTROINTESTINAL TRACT AS THEY WORK THEIR WAY THROUGH HIS SYSTEM;
🦃 ONCE YOU’VE COOKED YOUR TURKEY, AND BEFORE YOU SIT DOWN TO EAT, CLEAR AWAY ALL THE WRAPPINGS SUCH AS TIN FOIL, CELLOPHANE WRAP, PLASTIC BAGS, STRING AND MEAT SKEWERS – THEY ARE ALL POTENTIAL HAZARDS FOR YOUR DOG; I also recommend having someone clear all the appetizers and food and drinks guests may have left laying around while watching football or chatting, prior to the meal.
Clear trash immediately and IF YOU PUT THE WRAPPINGS IN THE BIN, MAKE SURE THE LID IS ON FIRMLY; WE HAVE USED BRICKS ON THE BIN LID IN THE PAST TO KEEP OUT PERSISTENT FORAGERS!
🦃 I PREPARE A TURKEY dinner for the dogs with Nulo canned turkey, dried organic cranberries, puréed canned pumpkin, sweet potatoes, and ground pumpkin seeds. I add some gizzards and fresh turkey meat to his food. My dog gets to eat alongside the family. I also stock up on toys for my dogs to play with and present a Kong stuffed with kibble or white turkey meat to keep them entertained. If your dog is happily playing, they're not getting into mischief in the kitchen.
🦃A TIRED DOG IS A GOOD DOG. I try and get out and give my dog A GOOD ENERGETIC WALK IN THE MORNING, SOMETHING THAT’S MENTALLY AND PHYSICALLY STIMULATING. THAT WAY HE’LL BE MORE INCLINED TO SLEEP OR AT LEAST LIE QUIETLY WHILST YOU ARE PREPARING AND EATING YOUR TURKEY ROAST – PARTICULARLY IF YOU GIVE HIM HIS KONG TO KEEP HIM BUSY!
JUST TO BE SAFE:
🦃Most Veterinary offices will be closed on Thanksgiving. Know the phone number and the closest 24hr. Emergency Animal Hospital.
🦃Dogs and cats can get anxious with the commotion and unfamiliar crowds, make sure they are wearing a proper ID should they get out.
🦃Remind guests not to indulge your dog and be cautious. Those who don't own pets may not understand their ability to get into food and the complete lack of willpower many pets have when it comes to food. -As a reminder, dogs and alcohol don’t mix either.
🦃While turkey meat and organs can be a wonderful healthy meal or treat, RICH, FATTY FOODS SUCH AS TURKEY SKIN AND DARK TURKEY MEAT ARE DIFFICULT TO DIGEST AND CAN CAUSE VOMITING AND DIARRHEA IN YOUR DOG, AND IN EXTREME CASES, BLOAT OR PANCREATITIS. (PANCREATITIS IS AN INFLAMMATION OF THE PANCREAS WHICH CAN BE LETHAL FOR YOUR DOG.) THE PANCREAS PRODUCES DIGESTIVE ENZYMES, AND WHEN INFLAMED THE NATURAL PRODUCTION AND RELEASE OF THESE ENZYMES IS DISRUPTED. WHEN THE DIGESTIVE ENZYMES ARE PRODUCED AND THERE’S NO FOOD TO DIGEST, THE ENZYMES WILL START DIGESTING BODY TISSUE INSTEAD. THIS CAUSES FURTHER INFLAMMATION OF THE PANCREAS – THE SEVERITY OF THE PANCREATITIS, AND YOUR DOG’S PROGNOSIS, WILL DEPEND ON HOW HE REACTS TO THIS INFLAMMATION. SYMPTOMS OF PANCREATITIS INCLUDE LOSS OF APPETITE, LETHARGY, VOMITING, ABDOMINAL PAIN, DIARRHEA AND FEVER. IF YOU SUSPECT YOUR DOG HAS HELPED HIMSELF TO A TURKEY DINNER AND IS SHOWING ANY OF THESE SYMPTOMS, THEN I SUGGEST YOU TAKE HIM TO YOUR VET AS SOON AS POSSIBLE!
No-No's for dogs:
Artificial sweetner: Xylitol (100x's more deadly than chocolate) found in sugarless gum, breath mints, candy.
chocolate -The darker the more toxic.
caffeine, alcohol. onions, grapes, raisins, popcorn, garlic, salt/sugar, avocado skin & pit Macadenia nuts.
The Weekly Runt wishes you a wonderful, happy, SAFE Thanksgiving! Gooble-Gooble🦃❤️🐾