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December 6, 2017 The Skanner Page 9
Top 10 Holiday Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Pet
By Dr. Jasmine Streeter, DVM
t is offi cially the season of feasting.
With Thanksgiving left overs tucked
in the fridge and Christmas cookies
baking in the oven, you and your pet
are probably being tempted with all
types of aromas. There are many holi-
day dishes that families enjoy during
this time of year. Sometimes we are
tempted to share these meals with our
pets. This month’s focus is on keeping
your pet healthy and happy by avoid-
ing these toxic foods and beverages.
1. Poultry Skin: Turkey, duck, chicken
and geese are one of the hallmark
dishes served for many families
around the country. Their cooked
skin is usually covered with de-
licious seasonings, oils and fats,
making them toxic to your pet. Pets
that ingest these skins are at risk
of developing a life-threatening ill-
ness resulting in infl ammation of
the pancreas (pancreatitis). Severe
vomiting and diarrhea may also be
2. Drippings and Gravy: The drip-
pings of meats are oft en used to
make gravy. The gravy contains all
the seasonings and even more fat
than the skin of the meat itself. These
foods may also cause pancreatitis,
vomiting and diarrhea.
3. Cooked Ham, Poultry and Steak
Bones: These bones may be a favor-
ite of your pet. Did you know that
they are dangerous when ingested?
When consumed, they can break
and splinter into sharp points that
cause tears in the intestine or a for-
eign body obstruction.
4. Dough: Bread, cake, cookie and muf-
fi n dough oft en contain leavening
agents that make ingestion harmful
to your pets. When eaten, the dough
expands in the stomach causing pain
and producing toxic ethanol from
5. Alcohol: This substance should nev-
er be shared with your pet. Alcohol
or ethanol is metabolized diff erently
in dogs and cats than in humans. In-
gestion of this substance can lead to
diffi culty breathing, seizures, vomit-
ing or death.
6. Onions and Garlic: These two com-
monly used seasonings can cause
red blood cell damage in your pet
leading to anemia
and sometimes the
production of red or
brown urine (hemo-
similar vegetables of
the genus Allium (e.g.,
chives, leeks, and scal-
lions) are also toxic
and should be avoided.
7. Raisins and Grapes:
These fruits of the
genus Vitis can lead
to acute kidney fail-
ure and death when
Dr. Jasmine and her cat Soleil wear festive attire for the season
ingested by dogs and
picks: These are commonly stolen
8. Macadamia Nuts: These delicious
items from left over dinner plates
nuts have been shown to cause hind
when ingested can lead to foreign
limb weakness (paresis) and abnor-
body obstruction or vomiting.
mal gait (ataxia) when ingested in
This season should be spent creating
memories of love and joy. Hopefully,
9. Chocolate: This sweet treat contains by following this guide, you will avoid
caff eine and theobromine which are costly veterinary bills and save money.
toxic for your pet. The darker the Wishing you a Merry Christmas, Hap-
chocolate (e.g., bakers or dark choc- py Kwanzaa, and a Happy New Year!
olate) the more harmful it will be to
Do you have a question for Dr. Jasmine?
your furry family member.
Email your pet questions to the veteri-
10. Corn on the Cob, Twine, and Tooth- narian at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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