There’s a lot going on at Christmas. Tons of food, lots of extra calories, extra treats and goodies hanging around, eggnog, candy and those Christmas logs that are not really good but people buy them anyway! I often hear others, including myself, say that famous line: “I can’t believe I ate the whole thing.” Let’s face it-it’s a food-focused holiday. To be honest, I stress about a month before just thinking about all the things I can do to make sure it is a healthy (and therefore happy) holiday. However, as much as I am thinking about myself, I am always thinking about the furry little ones.
I have an chubby Pug…I told “KK”..it’s maintenance time! Every time I go to the kitchen or fridge, you can bet that KK is never far behind…once she starts sniffing, the others come a following! I am planning ahead so definitely taking every opportunity to make soups and some dishes for those sudden Pot Lucks that seem to be popping up a lot lately. I can tell our dogs are enjoying the good stuff; the bits of this and that droppings on the floor, and of course, the delectable smells wafting around the house. But as we all know- Holiday time mustn’t be a free-for-all. We should not be trying to pack away all goodies and neither should the dogs!
When I visited my Vet last week, she told me that during this time there is an increased number of office calls due to digestive problems because many humans got into the “festive” spirit and decided (I guess) to invite their animals to celebrate as well with high fat scraps, sugary and chocolaty “feel good” snacks, and home-made gravy made to perfection and used ( it seems) with every meat dish served. Oh yeah, and the bones! You maybe thinking that all of these goodies will surely put a smile on their snouts but in fact, you may be putting their health in jeopardy.
DON”T “STUFF” THE DOG-It’s easy to want to give your dog a big fat bowl of ham or turkey, mashed potatoes, and even some of that stuffing or whatever you seem to be enjoying. Overindulging in these fatty foods can lead to an upset stomach, diarrhea, or pancreatitis. Turkey skin, for example, can wreak havoc with a dog’s digestive system.
MAKE NO BONES ABOUT IT: Cooked turkey bones can be dangerous. They’re sharp, and potentially very dangerous. A dog could get a turkey bone lodged in its digestive system for days. Discard leftover bones and and dispose with a secure lid so your pups and any stray animals can’t get to them.
KEEP HERB OUT OF THE WAY!-Sage and some other herbs have essential oils that can cause tummy upset and central nervous system depression if a dog eats them in large quantities. Some people mistakenly believe that because herbs are “natural”, they must also be “safe”. Not True! Like any other therapeutic substance, certain herbs can cause side effects. Some can be toxic or lethal to some animals when used inappropriately. Sage is one but also tea tree oil and garlic could cause dangerous side effects. In some cases, herbs are used to treat dogs but if given in the wrong dose, or under the wrong conditions, could lead to suffering, illness or even death.
HAPPY HOUR DOES NOT CONDONE YAPPY HOUR-Kayla(KK) has been know to get into beer, cocktails and wine. Now we always watch out resting places. Dogs and booze are a bad mix. Dogs who consume alcohol can easily become disoriented and quite ill. And that festive Eggnog treat-well raw eggs contain avidin, an enzyme that keeps your dog from absorbing biotin. If that happens, your dog can get skin inflammation and lose hair. All in all, enjoy happy hour, drink responsibly, don’t drink and drive and make sure to bring in that holiday cheer with your human friends only!
LIFE MAY BE LIKE AN ONION: PEEL THE LAYERS BUT LEAVE THE PETS ALONE-Onions can lead to a dangerous form of anemia in dogs that may not be detected for days. Make sure that the dog and the cat stays away from the whites, yellows, and reds-The toxic effect of the onions are the same whether the product is raw, cooked or dehydrated.
NO RAW DEALS! Unless your dog is already on a raw diet, do not use the holidays as a time to simply plop a piece of raw turkey in its bowl or uncooked dough for bread or rolls. Just like us, if our bodies are not sued to something..what can happen? Stomach upset. Heat helps to make dough rise. If a dog eats raw dough, the heat from the dog’s body can cause the dough to and the swollen dough can cause pain, vomiting, and bloating.
UNCONDITIONAL LOVE WITHOUT CHOCOLATE: White chocolate is the least bad, then milk, dark and baking chocolate in order of severity. Dogs are simply poor and unable to metabolize, or break down, theobromine a chemical compound that is found in chocolate, coffee tea and cola products.
So, in addition to food there is alo a lot of loving that takes place over the holidays. Get out for a walk or snuggle on the couch- give your pets a bit of extra attention but don’t say it with food….I tell my hubby the same thing!!!::)))
To Nat Lauzon, fellow Montrealdogbloggers, readers/fans of Dog Gone Green and all friends of the Montrealdogblog-Here’s to a healthy, happy holiday season and all the best in 2012.
Shelly, Wayne, Bailey, Kayla, Maya and Punky!