Thursday, November 23, 2017

Thanksgiving Pet Pitfalls

Mitzie is a Schnauzer with a mighty sore belly. She turns away from the tastiest dog treats and doesn’t get up when her owner comes home. She has been vomiting on and off for two days and groans when her owner’s try to pick her up. 

Thinking they were including Mitzie in on the holiday, her owners offered her tastes of their meal. But all those delicious human entrees and sides have left her seriously ill and hospitalized at the veterinary office. Mitzie is experiencing a case of pancreatitis, a common post-holiday illness.

Pancreatitis is more than just an upset stomach- it can be life threatening. Sharing table scraps, especially rich or fatty foods often triggers pancreatitis and some breeds like the Schnauzer are especially prone to pancreatitis. The illness is typically treated with pain medications, anti-vomiting medicines, intravenous fluids and other medications. 

After several days of hospital care, Mitzie makes a fortunate recovery and has strict diet limitations in the future. But Mitzie isn’t alone- countless other pets will arrive at the veterinary office for digestive upset after Thanksgiving, some with minor digestive upset and some with other maladies. Read on to learn other common pet illnesses around the holiday.


Feeding bones

Bones are stronger than dog’s teeth and may lead to broken teeth, requiring either root canal or surgical extraction. No bones are truly safe and can cause injury to the mouth, digestive tract and require exploratory surgery.  

Feeding toxic human foods

Keep in mind that onions, chocolate, raisins, grapes, macadamia nuts and rising bread dough are toxic to pets.

Feeding old leftovers

Don’t feed your pet old leftovers stored in the fridge after 4 days- dogs can get food poisoning from old food too.

Not securing trash

A dog’s nose will lead the way to turkey bones and other disposed edibles. Secure your holiday trash in a closing container in an area that is off limits to your pets. 

If your pet is a part of the family and you want to include them in the holiday, offer their favorite dog treat. Or entertain them with doggie pupcicles – low- salt chicken broth frozen into dog sized treats. But if you must select an item off your holiday table, offer small bits of white turkey meat without the skin and bones. 

May you and your extended pet family enjoy a wonderful Thanksgiving!


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