Monday, November 22, 2010
Thanksgiving Safety for Your Pets
Just a couple days left to finish your meal planning and decorating for the start of the holidays. What is your favorite part of the Thanksgiving dinner? The turkey, or maybe ham, mashed potatoes with gravy, or let's not forget the stuffing and pumpkin pie. Are you drooling yet? Guess who else is drooling? Or maybe a four legged feline is walking between your legs, purring loudly, letting you know he wants some too.
Pets add a special part to any holiday celebration, whether you are entertaining one or 20. You may be tempted to include your pet in the festivities by handing him some table scraps or letting him lick your plate clean. For the sake of your pet, and your stress level, you may want to rethink that "treat".
Dogs that are fed very fatty food can develop a sudden onset of pancreatitis. Symptoms of acute pancreatitis may range from mild to very severe. The symptoms are similar to those of other diseases and may include a very painful abdomen, lack of appetite, depression, dehydration, a 'hunched up' posture, vomiting, and perhaps diarrhea. Fever often accompanies these symptoms. Cats can get pancreatitis also, but they don't usually have the acute symptoms and it is usually associate with other causes.
The other common food indiscretion at Thanksgiving are the turkey bones. Even if you try your best to keep your pets out of the turkey carcass they have a way of being sneaky just when you turn your back. Cooked turkey bones can be brittle and will shatter easily when chewed. The sharp slivers of bone are dangerous if swallowed. They can get caught in the throat causing him to choke, or pierce the stomach or intestine requiring surgery. Sometimes the bones will pass uneventfully. To increase the likelihood you may feed your dog some pieces of bread. The thought is that the bones will get encased in the bread and decrease the danger of passing through the intestinal tract.
For either of these instances, if your pet is vomiting, has diarrhea, seems very week or lethargic, has pale gums, or seems painful it is best to bring him to see a Veterinarian right away.
Hopefully these tips will decrease your chances of needing a Veterinary Emergency Room on Thanksgiving, but if you do, we'll be open all day and would be happy to see your pet. If you are in the Denver area just call 303-874-7387.
From our Veterinary ER to you, we wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving!