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Thanksgiving Tips for Pet Parents

Thanksgiving is coming up fast! Pets are truly something to be thankful for. They offer us unconditional love and unwavering loyalty, keep us smiling with their adorable antics, and are always willing to offer cuddles and affection. Read on for some great Thanksgiving pet care tips from me, your Marion, IA veterinarian.

Prepare For Guests

Before the big day, vacuum and dust thoroughly, and change your air filters. We also recommend brushing your pet, to remove the dead fur and dander from his or her coat. If you have a kitty, change the litterbox. If you have a dog, give Fido a bath, or take him to the groomer’s. For smaller pets, clean their cage and change out their bedding.

Offer Good Foods

It’s fine to give your animal companion a special treat, but be sure to stick with safe foods. Plain, cooked meat, fish, or poultry, without the skin, bones, or fat, is a good bet for Fido and Fluffy. Dogs and cats can also have some shredded deli meat or sodium-free broth. Never give your pet anything that contains garlic, onions, scallions, or chives. Other harmful foods to avoid include grapes, currants, and raisins; nuts; meat on the bone; pitted fruit; chocolate; alcohol; raw meat, dough, or yeast; and anything that contains xylitol. For pocket pets, reptiles, and exotic pets, ask your vet for recommendations.

Safety First

Thanksgiving may not seem very dangerous—except perhaps to our waistlines—but it can present some specific hazards to dogs and cats. Trash is one concern, especially for dogs. Fido has been known to go through the garbage in search of leftovers. The garbage could contain hazardous items like toothpicks, bones, can lids, tin foil, and plastic wrap. Use a trash can with a secure lid. Also, keep your furry friend in mind when putting up decorations. Things like garlands and wreaths can choke or entangle playful pets. Be very careful with candles and potpourri burners as well. Keep these well out of your pet’s reach!

Petiquette

Your furry companion will pay close attention as those delicious dishes start appearing. Begging is bad manners, and can make guests uncomfortable. Consider putting your dog or cat in a separate room with food, toys, treats, and bedding as you are serving and eating dinner.

Happy Thanksgiving! Please feel free to contact me, your local Marion, IA veterinarian, anytime.

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