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Make it Thanksgiving for Pup, too

Most of us love to eat just as much as our pups do. We just restrain ourselves around food, something pups are not known for doing.

But one day all bets are off as we gather with family and friends around enough food to feed a small nation. Thanksgiving is a joyous time. There is no reason why pup cannot share in that joy.

But, as with all things wonderful, he should do so with moderation. Some people food is just as healthy and enjoyable for pup as it is for us. Others, not so much. And still others should have a skull and crossbones on them as far as pup is concerned.

So let's talk about what pup CAN enjoy right along with - or right after - the people.

Turkey, ham, prime ribs - the nectar of the gods for most dogs, and very nutritious. Save the small pieces that fall to the platter as you carve your turkey for a very deserving dog. If your dog has a weight issue, no turkey skin. But a lean pup can certainly enjoy it. If pup is little, be sure to cut everything into bite sized pieces. "Restraint" is not a word in most dogs' vocabulary.

If your prime ribs have a lot of fat, that is not good for any sized pup. Avoid most bones, but a ham bone for a large dog can be nirvana.

And, no bones about it, give pup no bones.

Sweet Potatoes – a real pup treat all year round, an excellent source of beta carotene. Offer pup her sweet potatoes boiled or steamed as raw sweet potatoes can be difficult to digest.

Green Bean Casserole – like for you, small amounts of the cream sauce won’t cause irreparable harm. However, you might prefer to save some of the raw green beans to feed pup. So much more nutrition per calorie and most pups love raw vegetables.

Cranberries – dried cranberries are great! Overly sugared canned cranberry sauce, not so much.

Pumpkin and squash – most dogs adore these winter vegetables. They have just enough natural sweetness to entice pup and are fabulously nutritious. As with green beans, save some cooked pumpkin or squash before you add the butter, cream, wine and other less pet-friendly ingredients. As with sweet potatoes, offer the cooked version, as it is easier to digest.

Winter Greens – such as kale and chard are a fabulous source of vitamins. As with the other vegetables, take out a cooked portion for pup before you add the calorie laden ingredients that we, humans, really shouldn’t be eating either.

White Potatoes – have fiber and minerals, vitamins B3, B6 and potassium, copper and fiber. Again, keep the calorie laden additives to a minimum.

Holiday foods to avoid for pup

Stuffing and corn pudding – too many calories for the nutrition they provide. Plus they may contain onions orraisins, which, in sufficient amounts, can be toxic for pups.

Sauces, Relishes, Pickles – There no reason to give these to pup. They are laden with spices, sugar and other ingredients that can easily upset a pup tummy.

Onions, Chocolate, Macadamia Nuts, Grapes, Raisins and anything containing Xylitol (artificial sweetener) – No NO NO! Ever.

A word to the wise – if you are staying in Brooklyn, know where to find your Brooklyn Bark emergency magnet. You know Murphy’s Law if you don’t. Aunt Matilda will share her chocolate candies with Fluffy under the table, or Fido will help himself to the garbage in the kitchen while you are enjoying desert and coffee in the dining room.

Brooklyn has three excellent emergency vets who will be on duty. The two pet poison control centers will also be on duty. If pup gets into something questionable (or worse) call immediately. That’s why they are there.

If you are going visiting with pup, similarly, be sure to know where the nearest emergency vet can be reached.

We wish you and pup a joyous and safe holiday. Here’s to you both!

(If you need an emergency magnet, pop an email to with your snail mail address and we will happily send you one. No charge.)

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