Thanksgiving Safety Tips for Pets


With all the hustle and bustle that comes with the Thanksgiving holiday, your pets are just as affected as you are.  With excitement levels at all time highs when you have a full house or when you are traveling with your pets, there are a few safety tips you’ll want to be aware of to ensure that this holiday season is enjoyable for both you and your furry family members. 

It is extremely important to make sure that with all of the extra attention you are paying to guests, cooking, traveling, and entertaining, that you maintain the same semblance of a routine with both dogs and cats, as quick changes can impact them in ways that can be harmful to them.

1. Food Safety

There are a variety of foods that are harmful to your pets if ingested.  You’ll want to keep them away from the following:

  • turkey skin
  • turkey drippings and gravy
  • twine used to tie turkey legs
  • the wish bone
  • corn on the cob
  • stuffing
  • mashed potatoes
  • candied yams
  • chocolate
  • alcohol

Although this list seems long, there are a variety of foods that are safe for pets and will help to make them feel just as included in the feast as the rest of your guests!

2. Create a Safe Room

Whether your home is the one full of people and even other pets or you have taken your pet to a relatives or friends for the Thanksgiving meal, you should set up a room that your pet can go into to have some quite, alone time.  It’s important for them to be able to have a place to relax and not feel the stress of the busy day.

3. When Traveling

If you are traveling to visit friends and family this Thanksgiving and want to take your pets with you, the first thing you should do is to ensure that they are welcome at your destination.  Provided the answer is yes, make sure you put a collar and identification tags on them.  Also make sure to pack any medications they may need as well as a pet first aid kit in case of emergency.

4. Keep Pets Hydrated

Although you will do your best to ensure that your dogs and cats are taken care of throughout the busy day, it is extremely important to make sure they stay hydrated.  With the extra excitement they will undoubtedly be feeling, they may drink more often.  It is your responsibility to ensure their water bowl remains full and easily accessible to them.

5. Establish Ground Rules

Whether you are the destination for families and friends or you’ve traveled somewhere else, it is important to establish some ground rules with the people you will be with during the day.  Make sure that everyone (especially children) knows the rules: 

  • not to give your pet table scraps
  • don’t leave trash where it can be eaten
  • keep drinks at an out of reach level

These tips are meant to help provide both you and your pets a safe Thanksgiving day, so enjoy and make sure they enjoy it too!