Thursday, November 21, 2013

A Bone to Pick

Thanksgiving is a wonderful holiday in my favorite season of the year--Hunting Season. I love the crisp cool autumn mornings, the rich reds, golds and browns of the trees, the migrating birds creating patterns in the sky and Thanksgiving Dinner--always a feast at my mother-in-law's home with family and food everywhere.

Then. . . there are the leftovers.  Most of us enjoy sharing this fare with our pups.  While some dogs are able to process a different diet, others cannot, often resulting in discomfort like an upset stomach and diarrhea.  Natural foods such as lean meats and raw or cooked vegetables are great "extras" for holiday treats.  Starchy, spicy or sugary foods are just not good for them.    

There is also the question of bones.  Think about the natural diet of the canine species.  In the wild canines devoured most of their "kill," including bones.  Their digestive system is designed differently from ours with a shorter digestive tract and stronger stomach acid.  Uncooked bones can provide calcium and minerals such as collagen from the bone marrow.  Gnawing raw bones also helps to break down plaque and stimulate blood flow to the gums for better dental health.  However, bones that have been cooked, as in the Thanksgiving turkey, should  NEVER  be given to your dog.  These may splinter causing punctures in the esophagus and choking.

So using common sense, share special treats with your pups at holiday time.  Just avoid those that will cause digestive distress.

All of us at Five Oaks Retreat wish you a Happy Thanksgiving!