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Beware of Thanksgiving Pet Safety Hazards

November 15, 2016

Thanksgiving is almost here! In a few short days, you’ll be celebrating with family, food, and your animal companion. Just make sure your four-legged friends stay safe on the big day. Learn more below from a vet in Oconomowoc, WI.

Toxic Holiday Foods

Various foods you may have on your holiday table aren’t safe for pets. The list includes garlic, onions, chives, leeks, shallots, grapes and raisins, fatty foods, salt, butter, chocolate, candy, certain nuts, and caffeinated foods and beverages. It’s safest to keep your pet elsewhere during meal preparation and dinnertime—not only will this help them avoid anything harmful, it will prevent any annoying begging behavior.


Think twice before slipping Fido a turkey or ham bone this Thanksgiving. Bones, whether they’re cooked through or not, can break apart when chewed. This may create chunks, presenting a choking hazard, or slice a bone into sharp shards. These shards can cut a pet’s mouth or even puncture the intestinal lining when swallowed! It’s safest to avoid the risk; give your pet a chew toy or rawhide treat instead.

Alcoholic Beverages

If your holiday celebration will include alcoholic beverages, keep your pet’s safety in mind. Alcohol is very dangerous for pets; they respond to it the same way we do, except that it only takes small amounts to do serious damage. Never allow your pet to access beer, liquor, wine, champagne, or even foods cooked with alcohol, and don’t give your pet any alcoholic substance on purpose.

The Garbage Bag

Your holiday garbage bag is full of potential hazards for your pets! Bones, toxic foods, coffee grounds, choking hazards, fat-covered aluminum foil… the list goes on and on. Put your garbage bag somewhere that pets won’t have access, or put it inside of a hard plastic or metal container so that pets don’t have a chance to rip it open.

Fall Decorations

Have you set up autumn decorations like pumpkins, gourds, or decorative corn around your home? These items aren’t necessarily toxic to pets, but they can be chewed, swallowed, or choked on. If your pet is the type to nibble on whatever is lying around, keep a close eye on him or her to make sure they don’t get into anything they shouldn’t.

These aren’t the only Thanksgiving hazards out there! Call your Oconomowoc, WI veterinary professional for more great tips on keeping your animal companion safe this holiday.