Are you looking for fun ways to celebrate Thanksgiving with your dog? Thanksgiving is traditionally a time for families to gather together to bond over a lavish Turkey feast while enjoying each other’s company. Although Thanksgiving Day activities can be hectic, remember to include your furry friend too. If you’ve invited a lot of guests, it may be tempting to put your dog in another room. While that may be all right for a short time until everyone gets settled, it is not a good idea to leave your dog isolated all day. Like humans, dogs are social creatures and they can become equally stressed, if kept away from the Thanksgiving fun and festivities.
Below are fun ways to celebrate Thanksgiving with your dog:
Dress Them Up For The Party
You have your outfit planned out for Thanksgiving. If your dog likes to wear clothes or accessories, dress up your pup so that she can also get some attention. The last thing you want is for your dog to feel ignored. Let him join in the fun by dressing your dog up as a turkey with a DIY turkey costume. It may take a little planning and some extra time to prepare but your dog will surely be the center of attention.
Not everyone knows how to greet a dog appropriately. Let your guests know the best way to go up to your furry family member depending on his age and/or personality, if they are meeting your dog for the first time.
Children often run aggressively toward dogs when overly excited or they may run in the opposite direction if fearful. Share how to properly greet and play with your dog to put everyone at ease, including your dog, for a mutually satisfying and happy experience.
There are several fun ways to celebrate Thanksgiving with your dog with dog-friendly activities.
Will your guests be watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade or a football game? If they are, that is the perfect opportunity for them to curl up with your dog, giving him some cuddle time.
Are there friends or family members throwing football around in your yard? Have an Orka Flyer Dog Chew Toy or a ball at hand to toss around with your pup so he can join in the fun. Regardless of the game you play with your dog, it will help burn off excess energy and keep him well-behaved.
If the weather won’t permit outside play-time, how about having friends or family help your dog out with an interactive puzzle toy?
Food plays a major part in the Thanksgiving celebration. Say NO to table scraps. Let your guests know your dog is well fed and the sorry looking puppy face is nothing but a ploy. Remember, no garlic, no onions, no artificial sweeteners, no alcohol, no grapes, and no chocolates. Green beans, mashed potatoes, cheese, and turkey are fine in small quantities, if your dog is used to eating table food.
If your dog has a sensitive stomach or you don’t feed him table food, perhaps it would be better to let friends and family members know which healthy dog treats they can give your pup in lieu of human food.
The aroma drifting into the dining room from the kitchen can be just as inviting to your dog as it is to your guests making them want to go into the kitchen which may be unsafe for pets. Safety is of great importance as your pup will be underfoot while food is being prepared in the kitchen and brought out to the table. This is a good time for a guest, who is not involved in kitchen duties to spend quality time with your pooch by going for a walk, playing, or taking dog selfies. Your dog will be too distracted to slip into the kitchen if he has the focus of somebody’s attention.
A new toy is sure to keep your pup busy, distracted and rewarded for good behavior during Thanksgiving. For instance, if have a dog who likes to beg or get on the counter-tops when you are cooking, lure him to stay out of the way of the kitchen by keeping him busy with a new chew toy. You can also fill a Kong with your dog’s favorite treats to keep your dog busy. Then the chew toy or Kong can be used to entertain him before or during the Thanksgiving feast.
After-Dinner Traditions To Celebrate Thanksgiving With Your Dog
What is your family’s after-Thanksgiving-dinner tradition? Talking over coffee and dessert? Viewing the big football game on TV? Watching a Christmas classic such as “It’s a Wonderful Life” or “Miracle on 34th Street”? Hopefully your pooch will be ready for a nap now, but if he isn’t, simply bring out a favorite toy – that’s sure to keep your pup busy.
Going for a walk with your pup after dinner is a good way for you both to burn off some of the holiday calories accrued from earlier in the day.
Lastly, whether your dog dines with you or at another time on Thanksgiving, how about making his dinner a special Thanksgiving feast by adding an extra treat to it or by cooking him a special Thanksgiving meal? If you would like to cook something special for your dog on Thanksgiving, you may want to read Thanksgiving Recipes Safe For Pets.
Do you have other tips with fun ways to celebrate Thanksgiving with your dog that you like to do?
*This blog was updated in November 2018.*