Thanksgiving Pet Safety

Thanksgiving is approaching fast! We’re definitely thankful for our furry pals! Read on as an Ellicott City, MD vet discusses keeping your beloved pet happy, healthy, and safe on Turkey Day.


Do you have a four-legged bundle of zoom on your hands? Does Fido tend to greet people by jumping on them? Tire your furry friend out with a fun play session before your company arrives. Pets are naturally calmer after a good workout.


Food is front and center in many holiday traditions. You can offer Fido or Fluffy some plain, cooked meat, fish, or poultry, without the skin, bones, or fat. Sodium-free broth is also fine. Never give your dog or cat anything that contains garlic, onion, scallions, or chives; meat on the bone; dairy products; pitted fruits; avocado; chocolate; caffeine; grapes, currants, or raisins; raw meat, dough, or yeast; or xylitol. Also, make sure your guests don’t inadvertently feed your pet something that isn’t safe for them. (Note: this is often an issue with young children, as they don’t always understand that our animal friends can’t eat everything we do.)


Some pets find having visitors very stressful. Does your dog or cat get very excited or frightened by company? Put them in a quiet back room with bedding, food, toys, and, in Fluffy’s case, a litterbox, and just let them relax.


Playful pets are adorable, but they’re also prone to mischief. Keep this in mind as you’re decorating. Put anything you don’t want your frisky buddy batting at or chewing on out of paws’ reach. This includes things like candles, potpourri burners, string lights, garlands, and anything small or sharp. Many festive flowers, such as tulips and hydrangeas, are also dangerous, as they are toxic to pets. Stick with pet-safe options. You can find more information on the ASPCA site here.


Things can get pretty hectic when you have a full house. Pets can get accidentally stepped on, or dash out open doors. Pay close attention as people are coming and going. You don’t want your furry buddy to slip out as your aunt is bringing in that bean casserole. If your visitors are staying over, have them keep the guest room closed. Otherwise, they may find Fluffy or Fido sleeping on their bed!

Happy Thanksgiving! Please contact us, your Ellicott City, MD vet clinic, anytime. We’re here to help!

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