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The Ultimate Guide To Enjoying Thanksgiving With Your Pets!

by Heather Carter November 16, 2023

The Ultimate Guide To Enjoying Thanksgiving With Your Pets!

Thanksgiving is a time for gratitude, family, and, of course, delicious food! Including your pets in the festivities can enhance the joy of the holiday and the happiness of all those around you.

Here’s an easy guide to making the most of Thanksgiving with your pets!

Pet-Friendly Decorations

  • Opt for pet-safe decorations, avoiding items that could be harmful if ingested.
  • Keep candles, potpourri, and other potential hazards out of your pet’s reach.
  • Be cautious with holiday plants such as poinsettias, holly, and mistletoe, as they can be toxic to pets if ingested.
  • Use LED lights, which stay cooler than traditional lights, reducing the risk of burns to your pet if they encounter them.
  • Conceal electrical cords from lights and decorations to prevent pets from chewing on them.

Pet-Safe Foods

  • Share a small portion of pet-friendly Thanksgiving foods, such as:
    • Dogs- Carrots, Celery, Turkey (No Skin), Corn (No Cob), Sweet Potatoes, Green Beans, Apples, or Pumpkin.
      • While many dogs love bones, it’s crucial to avoid giving them poultry bones, as they can splinter and cause harm to your pet.
    • Horses- Raisins, Sugar Cubes, Pitted Dates, Apple Pieces, Carrots, Sunflower Seeds, or Peppermints.
  • Avoid feeding pets foods that are toxic to them, including:
    • Dogs- Onions, Leeks, Ham, Turkey Bones, Casseroles, Garlic, Grapes, Stuffing, or Chocolate.
    • Horses- Garlic/Onions, Chocolate, Potatoes, Tomatoes, Meat, Bread, or Dairy Products.

Create A Safe Space

  • If you’re hosting guests, set up a quiet and comfortable space for your pet to retreat to if they are feeling overwhelmed.
  • Inform guests about your pet’s boundaries and ask them not to feed your pet without checking with you first!

Regular Exercise

  • Ensure your pets get enough exercise before guests arrive to help them stay calm during all the festivities. A tired pet is much less likely to be overly excited or anxious.
  • Invest in interactive toys that engage your pets both physically and mentally. Toys that dispense treats can be especially enticing and distracting for an overly excited pet.
  • If the weather is unfavorable, create an indoor play area where they can still engage in fun exercise that will keep them stimulated and occupied.
  • Participate in playtime with your pet after your meal to help burn off any excess energy (or those extra yummy treats).

ID Tags And Microchips

  • If you’re hosting guests, make sure your pet has proper identification in case they accidentally escape during any of the festive commotion.
  • Make sure your pet’s ID tag contains up-to-date information, including your name, current phone number, and any other relevant contact details.
  • Ensure that your pet’s microchip is registered with a reputable pet recovery database and all their information is current.

Keep An Eye On The Trash

  • Dispose of leftovers and garbage promptly and securely to prevent pets from getting into potentially harmful items (or making a huge mess).
  • Use trash cans with secure lids or consider pet-proof trash containers.
  • Empty the trash regularly, especially after holiday meals. This reduces the chances of your pets getting discarded items.
  • If you suspect your pet has ingested something harmful, monitor them for signs of illness (vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy) and seek immediate veterinary attention!

Hydrate Your Pet

  • Provide plenty of fresh water for your pet, especially if they are indulging in special treats!
  • Ensure that their bowl is always fresh, clean, and full! If it is located outside, check it regularly to ensure it hasn’t gone dry or frozen over.

Consult Your Vet

  • If you have any concerns about your pet’s ability to handle the festivities, consult with your veterinarian for some personalized advice!

By incorporating these tips, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving for both you and your furry friends!


Heather Carter


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