Will there be other pets?
If your family's Thanksgiving celebration is pet friendly that doesn't mean you are off the hook. It's important to know what other pets are going to be there, and to know how your pet will react. Pets can easily become stressed with all the new people around and adding in other pets can lead to a potentially dangerous situation. Always keep an eye on your pet and try not to leave them alone with other pets. Your pet may be wiel trained, but in stressful situations, pets may exhibit behavior that is unusual for them.
Are there kids, babies, or elderly in the family?
Thanksgiving is a great time for all different generations to gather together from great-grandparents to newborns. As a pet owner, it is important to remember that some families don't have pets. For children this can be a great experience, but it can also be scary. Many kids may not know how to act around your pet and may not know when your pet is just playing or when it is scared. Make sure your pet isn't left alone with kids, especially, if your pet hasn't been around kids before. Pets are naturally curious, but make sure your pet stays away from young children unless the parents are comfortable with it and are there to supervise. This is as much for your pet's safety as it is for the child's. Also, make sure that pets are not going to jump up and potentially hurt young children or the elderly. Even well trained pets can exhibit unusual behavior when in stressful situations.
Is the door closed?
Where is the trash?
From spilled drinks to uneaten food, a Thanksgiving celebration can accumulate mountains of trash. Make sure that your pet is unable to get into the trash can by ensuring that is has a lid. It is also important that the full trash bags are taken out to a place where pets cannot reach them.
Are people sneaking your pet food?
While Thanksgiving is a time for us to stuff ourselves with delicious food, it is important to make sure your pet is not doing the same. This can be a major problem, especially, when there are guests who don't have pets. It can be easy for them to give in to puppy dog eyes or a soothing purr. Often times people may ignore your warnings about not feeding your pet thinking that just a few scraps won't be a big deal. Unfortunately, many of the foods being served can be potentially very dangerous for your pet. Young children often think it is a game to feed pets and unsupervised plates and countertops are very tempting for even the best behaved dog. If possible, the best thing is to keep pets in another room or keep them close by your while there is food being served.
Thanksgiving is a great time of year spent with family and friends. Hopefully these tips will help you to avoid potentially dangerous situations for your pets and guests. If you feel that your pet will become overwhelmed with the festivities, put them in another room or a crate so they're out of the frenzy and feel safe. You might even what to consider boarding them to remove them completely from the situation. If your pet is particularly upset by houseguests, talk to us about possible solutions to this common problem.
The entire staff at Prosper Trail Animal Hospital would like to wish you and your family a safe and happy Thanksgiving. If you have any questions or concerns about your pet please call us at 972-347-6100 and we will be happy to help.