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Thanksgiving Safety with Your Pet


The holiday season is upon us. Thanksgiving is a time for family and friends to come together and give thanks for what we have.  Today pets are a significant part of our families and are included in the celebration. If you are like us, the Thanksgiving feast is one that you look forward to all year long. While we may be able to throw caution to the wind once a year, we must be careful of what our pets receive on that day. Both dogs and cats are not used to some of the indulgences of the day and can have serious problems.

Here are 10 things to consider to keep your pet healthy and happy on Thanksgiving.

  1. Many of the traditional foods contain large amounts of fat which should be avoided. Gravy, turkey skin, the drippings from the turkey pan and other foods should be avoided. Excess fat can create problems with the pancreas and further aggravate an already overweight animal.
  2. Pancreatitis is a very painful condition most commonly brought on by an excessively large meal or a meal with increased amounts of fat (there are other causes, but during the holiday season this is the most common cause). It stimulates the pancreas to produce large amounts of the enzymes needed to digest the nutrients. If there are increased amounts in the pancreas, sometimes these enzymes can’t get out of the pancreas fast enough and begin to actually break down the wall of the ducts and leak into the abdomen. This can cause vomiting diarrhea, restlessness, weakness, discomfort and can even be life threatening.
  3. Bones should be avoided at all cost, especially the bones of birds as they are hollow and can break into very sharp pieces which will wreak havoc with the digestive tract.
  4. Chocolate, especially dark chocolate should be avoided as there is a toxin, theobromine in all chocolate.
  5. When it comes to our beloved family pets, the key word is moderation. Be careful that everyone is not slipping the pets a few tidbits from the table. Set the rules early on for who feeds the pets and when.
  6. Watch out for dropped food, especially by our younger family members.
  7. Make sure all garbage is secure and not left to tempt a pet when we aren’t looking. Cats and even some dogs can easily get on counter tops when we are enjoying our meal in another room.
  8. Pets are also attracted to aluminum foil, wax paper and plastic wrap that has been used to cover foods. These items can cause digestive issues and even obstruction.
  9. Some pets become nervous with all the excitement and may need a quiet refuge away from all the noise and excitement.
  10. If you have a large family and there will be lots of doors to the outside opened and closed, be careful that there are no escapes into the wild that could ruin the day.

Thanksgiving is a great day full of great food and companionship. Make it the same for the pets in your family by planning ahead. For a Thanksgiving turkey meal your pet will love, try Wellness 95% Turkey Recipe or Wellness Turkey Stew for dogs and Wellness Canned Turkey Recipe for Cats.

9 Responses to “Thanksgiving Safety with Your Pet”

  1. Marilyn says:

    My Shih Tzu is overweight and I have now put her on Wellness Core Reduced Calorie diet. I am feeding her 1/2 cup of dry kibbles together with approximately 2 Tablespoons of canned Core. Am I doing the right thing and have I picked the proper food. Although the breed standard is no more than 17 lbs., her father was on the large side also. I know she has extra fat around her rib cage as this was diagnosed by her Veterinarian. If you think she would do better on one of your other products, please advise. Also how much food should I be feeding her in order to get a few pounds to drop off. Thank you.

  2. M. Richards says:

    I use all Wellness products for my six dogs. One dog has been on Sr. formula now for three years and this past month every can I open for her is full of rice. My dog is dealing with constipation problems and I stopped feeding her your Sr. Formula and her bowels are back to normal. Is there a reason for adding more rice to the Sr. formula? My dogs are all at the stages now where I need to find a food product that their systems can tolerate as they age and it wont be the Wellness Sr. formula canned until you remove all the extra rice thats packed in it.

  3. Thomas Solfio says:

    My dog has diabetes. She was having lots of problems till I switched her to Core reduced fat dry food and Evo grain free treats. Since then she has been doing good. I just wish it wasn’t so expensive to feed her the foods she needs. She is on insulin twice a day, high blood pressure pills twice a day and eye drops twice a day as she is also just about totally blind. I feel so bad for her. Cataract surgery is way to expensive so she just has to be blind. All her expenses are really a burden but I love her so much I don’t know what I will do when she does die. Any way I can get some kind of coupons or help in any way for her??

  4. Lyn says:

    Thanks so much for this reminder for our beloved furry family. I will be posting this on my blog as a reminder for all of my friends as well.

  5. Joe says:

    I think dogs have more of a chance getting pancreatitis eating commercial dog kibble filled with carbs and grains, (the things dogs can’t digest) then eating some turkey on thanksgiving.
    The pancreas works over time trying to digest dog kibble junk food.

  6. RichardTatro says:

    Thank You for the information and guidance for our pets. I know and am aware of many of the things you have mentioned to protect our little family members. This reminder is right on target and on time prior to Thanksgiving, hopefully people who have received this notice take the information very serious to prevent harm to our family pets. One item I was a little surprised about was the Dark Chocolate, as I know it is much better for humans, I thought it would be less harmful then regular chocolate. Now that i am aware that Dark Chocolate is also harmful my family members will also be equally informed.. Thank You for the Information!
    Happy Thanksgiving to All your families and staff, to include the family pets.

  7. Nancy says:

    I have always treated my cats to a turkey dinner on Thanksgiving, but I make sure they receive only white meat with no gravy, skin, or other high fat additions. They have never had any digestive difficulties as a result. Do you consider this a problem?

  8. Charlene Gianios says:

    I was excited to see your new canned stew for dogs but was dissapointed that you did not come out with a version for dogs on a fish protien who must eat fish protien only. We feed our dog Wellness Whitefish and Sweetpotato along with the canned Salmon. Have you thought of making the stew in just fish??

    Thank you, we love your food for our dog and would not use any other product.

  9. Deborah Hoft says:

    You failed to mention… to give thanks for your pet and to take them on a 20 to 45 minute walk prior to all the commotion of family gathering. Pet time ( and walk time for you) is essential, and will make for a more relaxed dog, and he/she can go and rest in a safe place. Of course, the walk after dinner is needed by all.. or yard game.
    Be grateful.. and Happy Thanksgiving to all.