5 Dog Friendly Thanksgiving Tips For A Safer Holiday

by Mindy Kaleta on November 21, 2013

Dog with Pumpkin on head

5 Dog Friendly Thanksgiving Tips For A Safer Holiday

 

The holidays are sweeping in upon us with neck breaking speed and with our already crowded schedules and responsibilities, thinking of how the festivities will unfold may be the last thing on our minds.  However, if you have pets, please take a moment to decide what arrangements you will make for them during this busy time when entertaining.

Now, I know that we love including our pets in the festivities because they are truly a part of our family. But to help make your holidays a little less hectic and a lot more enjoyable for you and your guests, let me suggest some Thanksgiving Tips.  The last thing you want to be doing on Thanksgiving is having to rush a dog to the vet or incurring an accident with an over rambunctious dog leaving your guests to vow never to return to your house again next Thanksgiving!  Family and friends are important and you want your day to be filled with laughter, love and being able to create those lasting memories that we all yearn for!  So, let’s get started!

#1  Confine Your  Dog While Guests Arrive

Nothing is worse for your guests than an overly friendly or barking dog when they are just trying to get in the door!  If you’ve ever encountered this situation, you know that your guests are a bit apprehensive, you are scrambling to grab the dog and your dog is wondering why you seem to be upset with him.  Confining your dog while guests arrive, during the meal and while you are visiting will cut down on the chaos and set the mood for an enjoyable day.

#2  Create a Safe and Happy Space for Your Dog  During the Meal and Entertaining

Think ahead and decide on a safe space for your dog where he is happy and contented. Be sure to make it dog proof so that you aren’t surprised with a shredded door or chewed up carpeting or other items when you go to check on him!  Your dog will be hearing all the talking and laughter, kids running and will want to join in. So, take into consideration what damage could be done if  he is not confined properly. Dog safe bones (such as Nyla bones), his favorite blanket with smells of you and your family, a dog toy filled with treats will help to keep your dog occupied and happy.

 #3  Resist the temptation to offer your dog table scraps

Turkey, gravy and rich foods of the season don’t settle well on a dog’s tummy!  These foods can cause numerous digestive system issues, which is one thing you don’t need in the middle of your celebration!  It may smell and taste great to your dog, but it’s really not worth it.  If you feel bad that he won’t be able to join in the family meal, make sure that you acquire a few safe and scrumptious treats especially for him before Thanksgiving Day.

#4  Supervise Play Between Kids and Your Dog  

Kids will be kids and from my personal experience, they tend to like to run. Dogs will be dogs and tend to like to chase running children!! Oh, what fun!  But a child running and playing, especially in a crowded house, with a dog in hot pursuit, sometimes is not a good mix.  Kids get knocked down, the dog thinks it’s time to play and it can get ugly really quick if there is little or no supervision with adults enjoying their meal and conversation.  It’s best to add the dog to the festivities when you are able to be there with him or at least within sight and sound of what your dog is being involved in. It just makes good sense.

#5  Head Outside for Fresh Air and Exercise

Your dog will thank you if after dinner that you take to the outdoors for some fun!  Throw a frisbee, take a brisk walk or engage in any other outdoor fun you can think of!  It’s good for you as well, after a big meal to get some fresh air and exercise to help get digestion moving along. Some families love to play football on Thanksgiving and your pooch would probably love to join in!

So, make it a fun day for all and do yourself a favor in getting some things ready ahead of time so that your day runs smoothly.  After all, Thanksgiving is a day for family and friends and making forever memories.  Let’s make them great!

Wishing all of you a Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours,

Don, Mindy & Roc

 

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