The holidays are a great time to bring everyone together, and whether you’re hosting, or traveling to someone else’s place who’s holding the festivities, it’s important to also keep in mind the needs of our furry friends. The holidays can pose a rash of issues for cats and dogs, so we’ve compiled these quick Thanksgiving pet safety tips with the help of the AVMA.
If you’re the one hosting for the holidays, we all know that family members and guests can sometimes get overwhelming, and often our pets feel the same way! There are a few quick Thanksgiving pet safety tips that can keep your furry friends feeling safe throughout the festivities.
- Give them a safe space. Having a room that is off-limits for guests such as a bedroom or office space, is a good idea so that your dog or cat can get away from the noise if they feel overwhelmed. Be sure to include easy access to water, and some of their favorite toys or pet bed so that they feel secure, regardless of what’s going on in the family area.
- Watch the doors! Pets that are stressed from a house full of visitors can sneak out an open door almost unnoticed. Make sure that anyone entering or exiting the home is aware you have pets, and knows to watch that they don’t accidentally let anyone out and that doors are securely closed behind them.
- Don’t share the food. While Thanksgiving is traditionally a sharing holiday, with large family platters of dinners and desserts, it’s always best to keep all of the food safely out of reach of your pets. Rich foods can cause upset stomachs, bones can get stuck and cause obstructions in the digestive tract and/or choking, and desserts can have toxic affects on dogs and cats who’s systems can’t process foods the same way we can.
- Keep the trash out of reach. No one wants to walk into the kitchen after dinner to find that the dog raided the trash (maybe with the help of the cat…). Keep the trash securely out of reach in a closet or cabinet that can close tightly so that the same food you were careful not to share at the table, doesn’t find the way into your pet’s belly after it’s been in the garbage.
- Be careful of plants. There are many household plants and decorative flowers both potted and cut that are dangerous if ingested by dogs or cats. Lilies, poinsettias, hydrangeas, and more all can have moderate to serious and life threatening consequences. Best not to risk it. Check the ASPCA’s list of plants toxic to dogs and cats to be sure whatever you choose for foliage inside is safe for your pets.
- Act fast! Above all, if your pet isn’t acting right, call your vet right away! Waiting until morning or seeing if whatever ails your cat or dog will pass, may be too long to wait. Don’t chance it, and remember we’re always available 24/7 with an emergency line so that we can help if you need.
The holidays are a great time to spend with family, two and four-legged, and a little forethought can go a long way to ensuring that everyone has a comfortable, stress-free holiday!