While we feel especially thankful for our loved ones on Thanksgiving, letting our beloved four-legged family members munch off the table can be a true hazard to their health. While animal lovers know what’s harmful for Fluffy and Fido to ingest, it’s wise to make an announcement at the holiday table before you catch your pet snacking on scraps. After all, an emergency trip to the veterinarian’s office is no proper way to polish off your Turkey Day.
Ahead of Nov. 23, check out this expert-approved roundup of ten sweets and treats that you should never feed your dog or cat from the Thanksgiving table.
Don’t let your pet take a bite of Thanksgiving’s signature dish if it’s been smothered in garlic, butter or seasonings, as these can be extremely toxic. If the meat is totally plain, boneless and well cooked however, your dog or cat will be fine to nibble on it, according to the American Kennel Club and WebMD.
Another poultry dish that’s a no-go, pet insurance carrier Pets Best says that pork products can lead to pancreatitis, vomiting and diarrhea in pets. Further, even small portions of the fatty meat can cause obesity in smaller dogs and cats.
Unfortunately, this holiday favorite is off the table for cats and dogs. Wild mushrooms, grapes, raisins, and especially onions can be destructive to your pet’s delicate system.
"No matter what form they’re in (dry, raw, cooked, powder, or within other foods), onions are some of the absolute worst foods you could possibly give your pup (it’s poisonous for dogs, and it’s even worse for cats)," Sadie Cornelius, Marketing Director for Canine Journal told Reader’s Digest.
4. Sweet potatoes
If you like your Turkey Day sweet potatoes covered in marshmallows and spices, Fluffy and Fido shouldn’t dare take a bite: the sweet seasonings can lead to an upset stomach, fast. Served ungarnished, though, sweet potatoes are perfectly fine, according to the ASPCA.
5. Pumpkin pie
While a traditional slice of pumpkin pie is off-limits for your four legged friends, they can safely get into the festive holiday fun if they want to try plain, canned pumpkin, People reports. A surefire new favorite, pure pumpkin also aids with digestion.
6. Salty snack foods
While us humans can never get enough of potato chips, pretzels and popcorn, these salty treats can lead to “excessive thirst and urination, or even sodium ion poisoning” in our favorite dogs and cats, according to the ASPCA.
Similarly, nuts are bad for pets, too, the ASPCA states. Not only can almonds, pecans and walnuts, can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and even pancreatitis in cats and dogs, ingesting macadamia nuts can lead to “weakness, depression, vomiting, tremors and hyperthermia.”
One of the simplest desserts can be fatal for dogs and cats alike, according to PetMD. An ingredient in chocolate called theobromine is the trouble, and can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, and seizures, as well as death.
9. Coffee and caffeine
Likewise, methylxanthine-loaded coffees and caffeinated drinks and are very dangerous for pets to eat. If Fluffy and Fido accidentally slurp up a caffeinated drink, it can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, panting, excessive thirst and urination, hyperactivity, abnormal heart rhythm, tremors, seizures and even death, the ASPCA reports.
Come on, really? Just like people, pets can suffer from alcohol poisoning, whether it’s through alcoholic liquids or rum cake. PETA states that even in small doses, intoxication can lead to seizures, respiratory failure and death.