Turn Thanksgiving into ‘Wagsgiving’ for canines

Take-pet-care-precautions-throughout-the-holiday-season-to-ensure-that-pets-are-kept-healthy-and-safe-_16000425_800898795_0_0_14069543_300-4Thanksgiving is a fun time for the family to get together and dine on favorite foods, and why shouldn’t the family pet be involved? However, sometimes food that’s healthy for humans isn’t good for dogs. Pet owners need to make sure they know what is off-limits to their canines, and get inspiration for animal-approved treats.

Rick Woodford, author of “Feed Your Best Friend Better,” said that a basic rule of thumb for pet owners should be that if it goes on their plate, it shouldn’t go in their dog’s bowl. However, there are some holiday recipes that can be altered for a dog’s enjoyment. Woodford warns that pet owners should choose just one food to introduce into their dog’s Thanksgiving meal. They should also always check with their veterinarian to make sure it’s okay for the dog.

Thanksgiving foods that are pet-friendly include potatoes, vegetables, whipped cream and pumpkin pie filling. Pet owners can share all of these with dogs in small amounts before adding extra spices or flavoring. They must be careful with pumpkin pie filling, and should not use the pre-made, canned pie filling, which contains nutmeg and mace. With boiled potatoes, peas and pumpkin, it’s usually safe for pet owners to feed dogs one tablespoon per 10 pounds of body weight. Pet owners can give dogs one baby carrot or green bean per 10 pounds of body weight. If they’d like to share whipped cream, it’s usually safe to feed dogs one-fourth teaspoon per 10 pounds of body weight.

Many animal treats and recipes can be found online. Sometimes, they’re even tasty to humans, too. Chef Rachael Ray loves concocting foods that are safe for humans and dogs, and many holiday-themed ones can be found on her website.

As much as pet owners will love sharing this meal with their dog, it’s important they keep several safety precaution in mind. They need to check turkey for pieces of bone before feeding it to their dogs, because poultry bones can splinter inside of the dog’s mouth or throat. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution also suggests dog owners keep their pets away from other foods that will make them sick, such as chocolate, anything with the artificial sweetener xylitol, grapes, raisins and onions. With the right pet care, dogs can enjoy their own “Wagsgiving.”