Pet Tales

Holiday treat tips for pets

As we gather with friends and family for Thanksgiving, we want to offer a few tips on how to help keep your pets safe today — and throughout the holiday season. They’re from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Talkin’ turkey

If you decide to feed your pet a little nibble of turkey, make sure it’s boneless and well cooked. Don’t offer her raw or undercooked turkey, which may contain salmonella bacteria.

Sage advice

Sage can make your Thanksgiving stuffing taste delish, but it and many other herbs contain essential oils and resins that can cause stomach problems and central nervous system depression to pets if eaten in large quantities. Cats are especially sensitive to the effects of certain essential oils.

No bread dough

Don’t spoil your pet’s holiday by giving him raw bread dough. According to experts with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, when raw bread dough is ingested, an animal’s body heat causes the dough to rise in his stomach. As it expands, the pet may experience vomiting, severe abdominal pain and bloating, which could become a life-threatening emergency, requiring surgery.

Don't let them eat cake

If you’re baking Thanksgiving cakes, be sure your pets keep their noses out of the batter, especially if it includes raw eggs; they could contain salmonella bacteria that may lead to food poisoning.

Too much of a good thing

A few small boneless pieces of cooked turkey, a taste of mashed potatoes or even a lick of pumpkin pie shouldn’t pose a problem. However, don’t allow your pets to overindulge, as they could wind up with a case of upset stomach, diarrhea or even worse — an inflammatory condition of the pancreas known as pancreatitis. In fact, it’s best to keep pets on their regular diets during the holidays.

A feast fit for a Kong

While we’re chowing down, give your cat and dog their own little feast. Offer them Nylabones or made-for-pet chew bones. Or stuff their usual dinner — perhaps with a few added tidbits of turkey, vegetables (try sweet potato or green beans) and dribbles of gravy — inside a Kong toy. They’ll be happily occupied for a while, working hard to extract their dinner from the toy.

Animal-related events

In celebration of Black Friday, Woods Humane Society is waiving the adoption fees for all blackcoated animals. The Black Friday Adopt-a-thon will run from 10 a.m. Friday through 3 p.m. Saturday. Woods is at 875 Oklahoma Ave., in San Luis Obispo. For more information, call 543-9316 or visit .

Pacific Wildlife Care, in Morro Bay, is recruiting volunteers for animal care, hotline support, transportation and office support. Visit  for details.

If you have a story or photos of your furry, feathered or scaly friend please email to me to   or mail to Pet Tales, c/o The Tribune, P.O. Box 112, San Luis Obispo, CA 93406.