How to Enjoy a Safe and Pet-Friendly Thanksgiving

Written by: Dr. Cherice Roth


Thanksgiving is a cherished occasion marked by gratitude, family gatherings, and a delicious feast. However, while we relish the day, it's vital to remember our pets and ensure their safety amidst the festivities.


Before you celebrate Thanksgiving, here are some safety tips to help you and your pet have an amazing holiday together.

Keep an Eye on the Thanksgiving Turkey

The allure of the Thanksgiving turkey is undeniable. Those pleading eyes might compel us to share, but resisting the temptation is for the best. Turkey bones can splinter and pose a serious choking hazard, and the seasoned skin, laden with spices, butter, or marinade, can be challenging for pets to digest. If you want to treat your pet to some turkey, try Yummers Turkey and Cranberry Mix-In for a safe and delicious way to include them in the fall fun. As always, if you think there is a chance that your pet has gotten into something toxic, be on the safe side and contact the pet poison helpline and your vet.

Watch out for Thanksgiving Sweets

As we move to desserts, caution is so important. The sweet allure of chocolates and Thanksgiving baked goods can be dangerous for our pets. Dark or baking chocolate, in particular, can be hazardous. Further complicating the dessert table is the presence of xylitol, an artificial sweetener often used in baking. It's known to be toxic to dogs and cats. Also, watch for “birch sugar, wood sugar, or birch bark extract” - it’s all xylitol in disguise. If you want to surprise them with a festive Thanksgiving meal, Yummers Taste of the Season Bundle is a great alternative that’s made with ingredients and flavors pets love!

Put the Nuts Out of Reach

While we're on the topic of Thanksgiving food, let's not forget about the potential danger of nuts. Some, like macadamia nuts, are notably toxic to pets and can lead to alarming symptoms like tremors and fever. Make sure to keep them away from your pet so they don’t have any health issues.

Put Your Pet’s Mind at Ease

As we welcome guests into our homes for Thanksgiving celebrations, the increased hustle and bustle can be exciting and stressful for pets. It's beneficial to designate a quiet, comfortable retreat for them away from the noise and excitement. You can leave them a bowl of Yummers to keep them occupied and satisfied while your guests celebrate Thanksgiving. Informing guests about house rules regarding your pets ensures everyone's comfort. Especially with children, always ensure they are supervised when interacting with your dog or cat so everyone stays safe.

Cat at Thanksgiving Table

Set Thanksgiving Feeding Guidelines from the Start

You will want to be open and honest with your Thanksgiving guests about health challenges with your pet and how important it is that no one feeds them without your permission. Pets that are diabetic or prone to pancreatitis, food allergies, or GI foreign bodies should be protected by you and your guests from health issues. If they want to feed your pet, consider offering them a tasty mix-in packed with crave-worthy ingredients and health benefits that help your pet feel their best.

Beware of Toxic Plants

The decorative touch that plants provide is undeniably beautiful. Yet, many seasonal plants, like poinsettias, holly, and mistletoe, can be harmful if ingested by our pets. Opting for pet-safe decor or ensuring these plants are out of reach can make a world of difference during the holiday season.

Put Your Pet’s Safety First

Thanksgiving festivities aren't just about food. The cozy ambiance often incorporates candles, which, while atmospheric, can be a hazard. An overexcited tail wag or a curious cat can easily knock them over, leading to potential burns or even fires. Make sure to keep these items stored somewhere safe to avoid any preventable incidents. As the day proceeds, the accumulation of trash, especially food wrappers and disposable items, can be a veritable treasure trove for our pets. Keeping trash secured during the Thanksgiving celebration is a simple and effective preventive measure.

As Thanksgiving draws near with its promise of joyous moments and shared memories, a few simple precautions and their favorite Yummers recipe can ensure it's a delightful day for everyone. 


Here's wishing you all a safe, joyful, and paw-sitively wonderful Thanksgiving!

Dr. Cherice Roth

Dr. Cherice Roth

Dr. Roth is a practicing veterinarian with a background in telemedicine and a passion for equitable access to veterinary care for all pets. She knows how vitally important mealtime is for pets and shares Yummers' devotion to giving them what they want and need.