Keeping Your Dog Safe on Thanksgiving

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guest contributor: Lisa Hann,

Thanksgiving is one of the best holidays of the year, because what could be better than eating an exceptionally delicious meal with all your loved ones? In order to prepare for the feast, there’s so much to do and a lot on your mind. It’s easy to forget about little things, but your dog’s safety can’t be one of them. There are a few things in particular to consider during the holidays, such as using a DIY dog fence to keep your dog safe from kitchen accidents, or making sure your dog doesn’t eat anything from the big meal that could hurt them. As an important reminder, here are the top tips for keeping your dog safe during Thanksgiving

Don’t Allow Your Dog in the Kitchen

The kitchen is probably one of your dog’s favorite rooms in the house, especially when there’s a lot cooking. However, kitchen accidents involving dogs are too common, and they’re often caused when people accidentally trip over their four-legged friends. The safest thing to do is to keep your dog away from your kitchen during Thanksgiving prep and cooking. You can place your dog in a closed room with plenty of water and toys, or you can create a barrier in the kitchen doorway, such as with a baby gate. If you don’t want to have to step over a gate, or if you have a large opening to your kitchen, you might find that an indoor electronic dog fence is more convenient. Just make sure your guests know that you’re using a wireless dog fence as a kitchen barrier, so they don’t try to bring your dog into the kitchen.

Avoid Feeding Table Scraps to Your Dog

Even though your dog would love to partake in Thanksgiving dinner, it’s best they don’t. Too much fatty foods, especially turkey skin, can cause pancreatitis in dogs. Turkey bones are also dangerous, because they can pierce your dog’s throat, stomach, or intestines. Desserts containing the sugar substitute xylitol or chocolate will be toxic to your dog. Too many onions can also make your dog very sick, and small foods like nuts are choking hazards. Instead of giving your dog scraps, buy some special treats for them at the pet store ahead of time. When cleaning up after dinner, make sure the trash, especially the turkey carcass, is taken outside to the bin.

Ask Your Loved Ones to Be Cautious

Just as your guests should be aware if your dog is wearing an e-collar for an invisible dog fence, they should also be asked to observe a few safety precautions around your dog. For example, make sure they know not to feed your dog from their plates and that they don’t leave their food or drinks unattended. If they’re staying in your house, ask that they ensure anything hazardous, such as medications, is out-of-reach. If there are young children present, it’s a good time to give them a quick lesson on how to safely approach and interact with dogs, including that dogs don’t like to be hugged or kissed.

Take Proper Precautions When Traveling

Did you know that your dog should also be wearing a seatbelt while traveling in the car? If you’re taking any long drives this Thanksgiving and bringing your dog, make sure you purchase them a dog seatbelt, or at the very least, keep them inside their cage or crate. This keeps them safer in the event of a crash, and it also prevents them from distracting the driver by unexpectedly moving to the front seat. Be sure to add items for your dog to your car emergency kit, such as an extra collar and leash; extra bowls, food, and water; and a copy of their vaccination records. If your dog is trained on a wireless electric dog fence, consider bringing it with you so they can safely roam during rest stops and at your destination, if it doesn’t have a fenced-in yard.

Look Out for Potential Hazards in the House

While decorating your home, be sure to place lit candles high up where your dog can’t knock them over. Edible decor, such as pumpkins and corn stalks, should be kept out of your dog’s reach whenever possible, because ingesting large pieces can lead to stomach issues like intestinal blockages. Also make sure that all remnants of cooking and food are properly cleaned up, preferably in the garbage can outside. Kitchen items like aluminum foil, plastic wrap, and twine can all be hazardous to your dog if they accidentally ingest them.

Know How to Recognize Stress in Your Dog

The holidays can be stressful, and people often forget that their pets may be experiencing just as much stress as they are, if not more. Dogs in particular are stressed by lots of noise, people, and activity, so if your dog is not used to the hustle and bustle, be extra observant of their behavior. If they start acting unusual or showing signs of stress, it’s time to move them to a dark, quiet room where they can rest and calm down. Signs of stress in dogs include things like panting, growling, staring, shaking, hiding, jumping, pacing, and raised fur.

Most of these tips are common sense and things dog owners already watch out for, but it’s never a bad idea to go over them again. Accidents can happen, but with a little precaution, most of them will be avoided, and you’ll be able to enjoy the holidays without any unexpected incidents. While your dog may not enjoy the festivities as much as you do, they’ll at least be safe. If you have any other ideas for dog safety during the holidays, please share them, and have a happy and healthy Thanksgiving!

These Turkey Day safety tips come to us thanks to the ongoing educational efforts of; Dog Fence DIY has the most comprehensive and unbiased reviews for electric and wireless dog fences of all brands and prices.