It is almost Thanksgiving Day and all across the San Francisco Bay Area, families and friends will gather to share a special meal and quality time together. While this sounds idyllic, there are a few dangers and pitfalls that you’ll want to prevent to keep your pooch safe so that everyone has a thankful day. Check out these six tips to avoid a holiday trip to VCA SF Veterinary Specialists emergency room or from your dog literally stealing the show when your guests arrive.
1. Plan appropriate exercise so Rover isn’t going stir crazy when you’re entertaining a house full of people. Why not schedule an early morning walk with some friends at Crissy Field or a puppy play date at Fort Funston to wear them out.
2. Confine your pooch to keep them safe. Consider using a crate or securing your dog in single room if they tend to get underfoot while you cook, rush out the front door when it opens or if they’re uncomfortable around strangers. This is not cruel if they’ve had their exercise, potty breaks and they’re busy working on a favorite toy or a stuffed Kong.
3. If you don’t confine your dog, make sure that all items on the countertops and tables are out of reach. That gravy may smell heavenly but if Rover knocks the pan off the stove that will cause serious injury and nobody will appreciate a dog as the table centerpiece, feasting on the tediously prepared meal.
4. Educate visitors. People have the best of intentions but if your guests share their meal with your pooch or give too many treats, you may end up attending to your dogs GI upset all night instead. That is not something you’ll be thankful for.
5. Beware what you feed your dog on this special day. They don’t need a serving of what humans are eating and aside from the GI problems previously mentioned, some foods may be toxic. Sorry but no onion laced stuffing, turkey bones or desert with chocolate anything.
6. Store garbage carefully. Part of Thanksgiving is all the traditional foods served, particularly Turkey. However your pooch doesn’t know cooked bones splinter and can cause serious internal injuries so make sure that when you throw out food items, that a dog cannot push the bin over or the cabinet open to access it.
Taking a few precautions will keep your dog out of trouble. It will also prevent unwanted surprises and make however you choose to spend the holiday that much more enjoyable. In the end, spending quality time safely with those you love is what Thanksgiving is all about.