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Cats and Dogs, Critter Chatter

Critter Chatter: What Can Your Pet Eat for Thanksgiving? Holiday foods Your Pets Can and Cannot Eat

The Paw Print

Essential Pet Blog

Love to eat turkey, ‘Cause it’s good, Love to eat turkey, Like a good boy should, The Thanksgiving Song, Adam Sandler

Thanksgiving is my favorite time of the year. It’s an occasion to enjoy vast amounts of incredibly tasty foods and unique snacks, and, unlike December holidays, there are no worries about finding the perfect gift (except for the gift of weight gain.) We may want to share our turkey dinners with our pets, especially when pleading eyes seem to ask, “Excuse me…Are you really going to eat that?” but during Thanksgiving festivities we must be particularly diligent to ensure our pets cannot get into anything that might upset their digestive systems or effect their emotional well-being.

There are many Thanksgiving foods that most pets can tolerate in moderation:

  • Cooked, unseasoned turkey meat
  • Plain and sweet potatoes
  • Green beans, peas, carrots and corn
  • Pumpkin
  • Apples
  • Baked bread
  • Cooked eggs

There are some holiday foods they should not be fed:

  • Sweet or fatty foods can sometimes cause diarrhea.
  • Turkey bones or the turkey carcass tend to splinter and can get lodged in the back of their throat or stomach.
  • Avoid turkey skin, stuffing and other dishes you are serving to humans.
  • People foods containing xylitol or chocolate can be hazardous or even life threatening to pets.
  • Remember that leftovers will be “discovered” in garbage cans.
  • Keep an eye out for unattended alcoholic drinks that can be “slurped” by pets.

Make holiday gatherings enjoyable for your pets:

  • Ensure that rambunctious guests don’t cause emotional distress in pets, especially cats.
  • Try to keep up normal routines, including feeding amounts and exercise times.
  • Provide a special place of their own away from the festivities and offer ample food and fresh water. For cats timid around strangers or noise, keep them in a room that is relatively quiet and where there are hiding places and a litter box.

Enjoy Thanksgiving festivities and load up with plenty of scrumptious, healthy foods, but don’t indulge your dogs or cats except with small amounts of vegetables and lean turkey meat without fatty gravy and yummy butter. It’s okay that you love to eat turkey because it’s good. So is a nice long walk after dinner. Happy Thanksgiving.

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a vet and his dogABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dr. Brown holds a Doctorate Degree in Veterinary Medicine (DVM) from the University of California at Davis, a Master of Science Degree in Animal Science and Bachelor of Science Degree in Animal Physiology from the University of California.  Following discharge from the Air Force as a Captain, he owned and operated the largest veterinary hospital on Cape Cod for almost twenty years. Brown is the past President of the Yavapai Humane Society Board of Directors, Branding Committee Chairman for National Animal Supplement Council and member of the American Veterinary Medical Association.  He writes and lectures frequently on the benefits of natural and organic foods and supplements for animals and lives with his wife and a Golden Doodle named Charlotte.

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