Little dog dressed up in pilgrim hat surrounded by Thanksgiving decor

Thanksgiving with your Dog

Thanksgiving is such a wonderful holiday to bring family and friends together. With a little planning, your fur baby can enjoy the celebration too.

If you are cooking a plain turkey at home, there’s no reason your dog can’t enjoy a little of the meat along with you! In Chinese Medicine, turkey is neutral to cool food, which is especially great for older dogs or those who have a Yin deficiency.

To make sure your dog does not suffer from intestinal upset, be sure you bake your turkey without lathering on all of the butter, oil and seasonings.  That’s where some problems could begin.  If you do season your bird keep it simple and don’t feed the skin to your dog.  The fat content of the skin could lead to pancreatitis and seasonings could possibly irritate your dog’s digestive system.

Sitting around the table, make sure that no one slips your dog a cooked turkey bone. Poultry bones become very brittle when cooked and are small in size, which spells disaster for your dog who could suffer from an obstruction, choking, bone fragments piercing the lining of the stomach or intestines, constipation, rectal bleeding or a blockage that requires emergency surgery.  Scary stuff!!  So never feed cooked poultry bones!!

You’ll also want to bypass the stuffing when sharing your turkey with your dog.  Stuffing often includes onions that are toxic and that means onion powder too.

Green bean casserole wouldn’t be a good choice for your dog, but chopped up steamed green beans would be great!  A little plain baked sweet potato, not the yams covered in butter and marshmallows are another great addition to your dog’s Thanksgiving plate.  When cooking cranberries, you could always cook just a little tiny bit in plain water minus the sugar to let your dog have a teaspoon with dinner.

When it comes time for pie, your dog could enjoy a tablespoon of plain baked pumpkin without all the spices.

If you prefer to give your dog canned food, Merrick has a recipe called Thanksgiving Day Dinner. It has turkey, sweet potato, carrots, apples and green beans.

Not everyone is able to bring their dog along if going to someone else’s house for Thanksgiving and that usually means several hours of your dog being home alone.  Make sure you do something nice together before you have to leave the house.  Take a longer walk than you usually do together, play a little extra ball… do something out of the ordinary that makes the day special.

Most importantly take the time to give thanks for your wonderful companion and the life you share together. Pets are family and the holidays are for us to share together.  Just keep plan ahead and keep them safe.  You’ll have a wonderful memory to cherish always.

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