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Friday, November 18, 2011

Happy Holiday Hounds:
10 Safety Tips for Thanksgiving

by Carrie Boyko, CEB
© courtesy Michael Sarver via
Well Behaved Fidos
Are Welcome Party Guests

As many of us consider our options for saving the turkey for human consumption, our larger counter-surfing dogs are probably plotting against us. Then again, the smaller ones often get their way when whining or begging at the table. Here are a few tips to help you get through the Thanksgiving Dinner if you are hosting along with Fido.

  1. At arrival time, place enthusiastic pups on a leash and make an effort to encourage a calm greeting of your guests as the doorbell rings time and again. Be prepared with treats for an approving reward when you get the behavior you've requested.
  2. If well-intentioned gifts include plants, be certain these are placed out of reach of Fido. Many are poisonous. Always look up new foliage in your home to determine its potential for toxicity to your pets.
  3. Watch the placement of your appetizers. If you have a house full of counter-surfers you may want to consider asking one guest to "serve" by walking the hors d'ovueres around to avoid them being devoured by a wiley woofer.
  4. Consider your serving options based on your dogs' propensity for snatching. Buffet service in the kitchen that is left unattended while guests eat in the dining room may be invaded by canine noshers. Plan accordingly to avoid disaster.
  5. If your pups are not already trained to allow the dinner to progress without begging, crowding or other less-than-inviting behaviors, consider a diversion during dinner. Before the big day, fill a couple of Kongs with layers of tasty delights: mashed sweet potatoes or pumpkin, kibble, bananas, peeled apples, yogurt, a tiny bit of peanut butter, green beans, canned dog food, and even lean scraps of chicken or turkey. Freeze and serve frozen to give your pup a delicious and time-consuming snack that will give you and your guests the peaceful dinner you desire.
  6. Remember the dangers of cooked bones and be sure to place your bird's carcass well out of reach until cleanup is completed. The top of the refrigerator may seem a good choice unless you have a cat. My Patches easily locates hidden yummies in this seemingly terrific storage spot.
  7. Dessert is also particularly hazardous for dogs. Rich or chocolatey desserts may cause stomach upset or worse, so be vigilant about secure storage before and after serving. You really don't want to have to try to find a veterinary ER on Thanksgiving.
  8. Keep in mind that utensils used to serve, carve or eat your meal may be inviting to Fido. As guests leave the table, collect all dishes and flatware, placing the utensils in an out of reach soapy-soak until dishes are done. All knives, skewers and sharp objects should be collected immediately when they are not being supervised.
  9. If the worse case scenario does occur, consider your pup's needs. If an Xray is required, call ahead to an ER as you proceed with a companion to assist. If an undesirable food has been consumed, consider calling poison control for advice. Sometimes their instructions for bringing up the no-no offending yummy will do the trick if you are prompt.
  10. Our Pet Emergency Resource page is available 24/7 at this link. There are many resources for treatment of a variety of issues, but if a significant amount of an offending substance has been consumed, don't delay calling ASPCA's Poison Control at (888) 426-4435 or the Pet Poison Helpline at (800) 213-6680 . The fee for their services may well save your dog's life.
Keep in mind that Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on all that is positive in your life. Fido is part of the gift of happiness that your family enjoys. Preserve it by acting proactively. Happy Thanksgiving!

This post is part of the Saturday Pet Blogger Hop hosted by Confessions of the Plume, Life with Dogs, and Two Little Cavaliers. Their rules for linking up are copied below from Life with Dogs' site. 
  • Link up your pet blog name and URL using the Linky Tool below. You only need to add your link once to be seen on all the Saturday Pet Blogger Blog Hop Linky Tools for that week. Note that if your blog is not pet related your link will be removed. Also note that only one post per blog is acceptable, and links promoting giveaways that are unrelated to the pet blogger hop will be removed. This is a community building exercise and not a promotional vehicle – please treat it as such.
  • Grab the “Saturday Pet Blogger Blog Hop” button on the right hand side of this site and include it in your Saturday Blog hop post so that your readers will know what is going on. *Note – posting is optional. Feel free to just link and follow.
  • Follow your co-hosts listed in the first 3 slots of the Linky Tool.
  • Follow as many other blogs on the linky as you’d like.
  • Take a moment to comment on the blogs telling them you’re from the blog hop.
  • Follow back when you get a new follower through the Saturday Pet Blogger Hop.
  • Make friends and grow. ♥


Pug Daddy said...

this is exactly why we don't let our pug go anywhere or do anything!

Sage said...

Great advice! Fortunately, when we have anyone over for dinner, Sage either sleeps under the table or chews on her antler. It took a while to train her, but it works every time!

Unknown said...

Great tips. Thanks for sharing

Stem Cell Therapy in Dogs said...

Thank you for sharing to us the tips. It would be helpful to us. Thank you so much.

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