Many pet owners want their pets to share in the holiday festivities just as much as they do. For some pet owners, this means giving their pet food from the holiday feast. While pets can handle some human foods, it's important to follow these guidelines, which will help keep your pet safe.
Don't Feed Your Pet From the Table
Many pets are already tempted to help themselves from the human tabletop and will be even more inclined once you've started giving them snacks from its space. Give your pet the food in his or her dish, not from your hand while you're eating. This helps maintain appropriate boundaries.
Don't Feed Your Pet Too Many New Things At Once
Feeding your pet too many new foods can upset his or her stomach. In addition, if your pet does eat something that make him or her sick, you'll want a short list of possible foods that may be the source of the illness.
Don't Give Your Pet Alcohol
Some pets love alcohol, but their bodies are much smaller and can be much more easily affected by just a little bit of alcohol. Give your pet water only.
Run the Menu Past Your Pet's Veterinarian
Have your pet's veterinarian approve the menu before you feed your pet people food. While you may have heard that chocolate is poisonous to dogs and cats, this is just one of many foods that are not safe for your pet to eat. Unfortunately, some of these toxic foods are very prevalent at the holidays. For example:
- Alliums. Onions, garlic, leeks and other plants in the onion family are all common ingredients in holiday recipes like stuffing and mashed potatoes. However, even cooked versions of these foods can lead to toxic anemia in cats and dogs.
- Xylitol. Xylitol is a sugar substitute found in sugar-free and diabetic-friendly foods and desserts. This food can cause dangerous changes in blood sugar and liver damage in both dogs and cats.
- Grapes and raisins. Found in salads and sometimes in cranberry sauce, grapes and raisins can be toxic to cats and dogs.
Talking to your pet's veterinarian ahead of time about the foods you plan to feed to your pet gives will give the veterinarian an opportunity to tell you which foods are all right and which ones are not.
For more information, contact a veterinarian at All-Pets Hospital or a similar location