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Share the Holiday with your furry friends

It always seems we hear about holiday foods to avoid giving your pet. The list of no-no’s are considered unsafe or unhealthy by the American Veterinary Medical Association and include: Turkey bones, Turkey skin, gravy, stuffing, casseroles, mashed potatoes, creamed peas, chocolate, cookies, pies, alcohol, raisins, grapes, onions, scallions, garlic, ham, yeast dough, fatty foods and foods containing spices. The good news is you can still share yummy holiday foods with your furry friends that are safe and satisfying. Who can resist passing them a yummy treat during this time of the year anyway? Below is a list of healthy foods you can share with your beloved pets.
Sweet potatoes are a great source of dietary fiber, vitamin B6, vitamin C, and beta-carotene. Sweet potato treats can be as simple as a dehydrated sweet potato chew. Just remember not to give your pet sweet potatoes containing any added ingredients.
Potatoes. You get to enjoy both kinds of potatoes, and your dog can have that option, too. However, give only boiled or baked potatoes with no butter, sour cream, salt, or pepper, and serve in moderation.
Apples are full of vitamins A and C and contain lots of great fiber, making them a healthy Thanksgiving treat for your pet. However, if you’re sharing an apple with your pooch, be sure to cut around the core, as large amounts of apple seeds can be toxic.
Turkey meat (no bones, no skin). For those that wonder if dogs can eat turkey at Thanksgiving, the answer is yes. The main dish is okay to offer up as long as it has not been prepared with any seasoning. In addition to avoiding bones, you should also avoid offering them the skin. The outer layer of the poultry is likely to have been prepared with butter, spices, or other fatty ingredients that may cause pancreatitis or other issues for your dog.
Green beans. With ample amounts of plant fiber, manganese, and vitamins C and K, plain green beans are great for dogs. The key here, as with turkey, sweet potatoes, and other options mentioned in this list, is the bean dish should be plain meaning without any added ingredients like butter or spices.
Plain peas are a fine choice, but creamed peas should be avoided. Fattier food items like this that may upset your dog’s stomach.
Pumpkin itself is a very healthy snack. Pumpkin helps with digestive health, and it’s great for a dog’s skin and coat. Also, if feeding canned pumpkin, make sure it’s just pumpkin and not the pre-spiced pie mix.
Dessert is an option, but not just any kind. Go ahead and satisfy your pet’s sweet tooth with something healthy like frozen yogurt. Calcium, protein, and live bacteria that can act as probiotics will give your dog a tasty dose of nutrients, and a sweet post-meal treat.
For animals who are spending time outside, whether just during the day or all the time, it’s essential that they have a shelter that protects them from wind, rain, and snow, and that it is small and well-insulated enough for the pet’s body heat to keep the temperature up. Even better: Use hay and blankets to keep shelters cozy. Most importantly, make sure their water source does not turn into a huge chunk of ice. Let’s enjoy the holiday season will all of the members of our families, not just the ones with two legs.

Christie Slocum (572 Posts)