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Spokesdog's Canine Couch

A journey about dogs and their people by Diane Rich

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10 Safety Tips for your Pets During Thanksgiving Holiday

November 18th, 2012 at Sun, 18th, 2012 at 12:10 pm by Diane Rich

It’s that wonderful time of the year where friends and family gather to consume large quantities of food, socialize, watch football, kids play, teenagers text and dogs hope the aroma from the kitchen is a hint of a bounty for them.

Many well meaning dog lovers can’t resist the soulful eyes of the family dog begging for food so offer up some goodies. Some dogs are experienced beggars as they have learned tenacity works.

cDiane Rich

This time of year emergency Vets unfortunately see an increase of animal related medical conditions at the clinic.

General Safety Tips for your Pets
1. Plain turkey in small quantities may be ok for a pet. Most pets do not tolerate spicy seasonings very well or large quantity of food. So giving the dog a sampling of everything on the human menu should be avoided.
2. Food high in fat such as the skin of the bird can cause inflammation in our dogs
3. Make sure to dispose of turkey bones where the pet cannot get to it. These bones will splinter when chewed. Bones can get caught in a pet’s esophagus or intestinal track. Could be life threatening
4. Rancid food is full of bacteria and can make a pet very sick, so make sure garbage is not accessible to the pet
5. Turkey stuffing may contain onions, garlic or raisons all toxic to dogs. Included on the list is bread dough, grapes and chocolate, avocados
6. Remind guests not to offer table scraps or appetizers to the dog
7. Manage children and pets. The excitement of the holiday can get the best of anyone
cDiane Rich

8. If the family pet is skittish around people, noises, sudden movement then containing the dog away from the stimulation is recommended
9. If your pet guards any resources such as food, toys or you be proactive to ensure everyone has a good Thanksgiving. Otherwise a child or adult could get bitten
10. An open door or open garage may be an invitation for your pet to bolt. Keep your pet contained while guests are coming or going

Other Suggestions:
1. On the morning of the holiday try to exercise the dog to try to wear them out before guests arrive
2. Offer special chew toys during the time people are buzzing around
3. Make sure your pet has ID and license on a collar just in case s/he bolts out an open door
4. Offer friendly reminders to family and friends if necessary as to interactions with your pet. Not every dog is comfortable with hugs or being on someone’s lap

Have a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving
Diane Rich Dog Training, LLC

I have been training dogs and their people for over 25 years. I work with pups from 7 weeks old to senior plus dogs and offer basic obedience to advanced off leash training both privately and group classes. Other services include behavior consultations to help both ends of the leash with everything from aggression, puppy/dog manners and public manners to separation anxiety. As a "real world" dog trainer, I take training out of the classroom or home when both the pet and family are ready, and take training to the street. I also offer pet therapy training classes preparing both the handler and dog for their therapy test and future service as a therapy team. I also coordinate several pet therapy programs in the Seattle area. My complete bio, description of services, class dates and on line class registration is listed on my website at

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