Thanksgiving Pet Safety: 5 Tips for a Pet-Friendly Celebration

Posted by Tori Holmes
Thanksgiving Pet Safety
ASPCA

There’s no denying that Thanksgiving is one of the busiest times of years, especially when it comes to social events.

Whether it’s dinner with family, a get-together with friends, or a neighborhood potluck, there’s no shortage of celebrations to attend on Thanksgiving weekend. With great food and company, Thanksgiving get-togethers can be a blast, but for your furry friends they can be a bit overwhelming.

That is why it’s important that you keep these five Thanksgiving pet safety tips in mind to ensure that your four-legged friends stay safe and relaxed through all the weekend celebrations.

1. Avoid Escape

There’s a good chance that guests will be coming and going through the weekend, which means there are plenty of opportunities for your pet to slip out the door.

To avoid an unexpected escape, do your best to keep your pet away from the door unless they are being supervised. A simple way to do this is to keep them secured in a different room or on a leash with you while guests arrive or leave. Make sure your dog is wearing their collar with the proper identification tags if they do get out.

2. No Food for Pets

There will be no shortage of food and drinks available during Thanksgiving dinner, but that doesn’t mean you should share it with your pets. Many of the ingredients used in everyday cooking and baking, such as onion, garlic, and chocolate, can be highly toxic to your pet, even life-threatening. We all know that cooked turkey bones can splinter and cause intestinal blockage, inflammation, and abdominal pain which may lead to an emergency clinic which will ruin everyone’s evening.

Even if the food served is not toxic to your pet, eating it may lead to digestive distress and issues in the digestive tract, and in the long run, fatty foods can cause weight gain and bloating. Due to this, it’s important that all guests know that the food served is strictly for humans – no sharing table scraps with pets!

Parson Jack Russell Terrier at home

3. Give Your Pet a Space of Their Own

When you’re in the thick of the Thanksgiving feast, it can be nice to have a quiet space you can slip away to for a few moments of peace. You’re not the only one who appreciates a quiet place, though. Your pets do as well!

If your pet will be joining the Thanksgiving celebrations, make sure that they have a quiet area where they can go if they begin to feel overwhelmed. This quiet space should also include fresh water, toys, and a comfortable bed.

4. Keep Food out of Reach

Whether your Thanksgiving meal is served buffet style or extras are simply left in the kitchen, make sure that any food is supervised or out of reach when your pet is around. Even once the meals have been eaten, plates left on surfaces can be easily accessed by pets.

A great way to avoid this situation is to have a dedicated person keeping an eye out and cleaning any plates left around the house.

Chihuahua licking lips and looking at food on plate at dinner table

5. Don’t Forget the Garbage Can

This same care in making sure that your pet doesn’t eat human food before and during the meal should be given during the cleanup. As dishes are cleared, there’s a good chance that an unsupervised pet could get into the trash looking for scraps.

An easy way to solve this is to use a garbage can with a lid or keeping the bin inside a cupboard or in a different room that your pet won’t be able to access.

Keeping these five tips in mind before your big Thanksgiving celebration will ensure that both four- and two-legged guests have a bountiful feast. 

Happy thanksgiving, furry friends and fellow pet owners!

Tell us how you watch for your dog during the holiday season in the comments!

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Thanksgiving Pet Safety: 5 Tips for a Pet-Friendly Celebration