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Christmas Dinner For Your Pets

Whether you’re a cat-lover or a dog-lover (or both!) one thing we can all agree on is that they’re an equal member of the family. This means that our festive periods such as Christmas, we want them to be integrated and to feel as loved on the special day as everyone else.

Of course, you can get your pets gifts, like getting a cat flap fitter to install a new, swanky cat flap, or you can buy a new bed for your dog, for example.

For many, though, the best part of the day is the greatly anticipated Christmas meal. Some families might sneak their pets a scrap or two under the table; others will serve up a full Christmas dinner in their pet’s bowl – but how much of these human foods can our animals actually eat without it causing damage to their health? Read on to find out.

Cats

Meat: The traditional Christmas dinner meats – turkey, goose, ham, beef – should only be served to your cats in thin slithers. This is because in large quantities the meat is too rich for a cat’s digestive system, which could make them sick. If the meats have been cooked with goose fat, gravy, or stuffing, then avoid altogether for the same reason. Pigs in blankets, altough a seasonal favourite for humans, are far too fatty for cats and should not be given. The meat should be unseasoned for your cat’s feast – deliciousness doesn’t come before health!

Veg: Cats should NEVER eat onions, even in minuscule quantities. Onions are toxic to cats and can cause anaemia and even lead to death. If your cat is a curious kit, make sure any onion dishes (even the stuffing!) are covered when unattended. Cranberry sauce is also a no-no as it is too sugary. However, there are some vegetables that your cats can enjoy in moderation. These are: Carrots, sprouts, parsnips, and swedes.

Potatoes: Any form of potato should be avoided, whether it be roasted, mashed, cooked or raw.

Chocolates: Chocolates should not be given to your cats, for the same reason as cranberry sauce: it is too sugary.

Dogs

Meat: There is a little more leeway with meat that you can give to dogs than you can give to cats. Dogs can enjoy skinless, boneless white meat such as turkey in moderation – just make sure that you don’t overfeed them. Likewise to cats, pigs in blankets may be a tasty treat for us humans, but will not sit well with a dog’s digestive system due to its immense fattiness- do not give.

Veg: Again, there is a little more tolerance on what your dog can enjoy in their Christmas dinner. For similar reasons to cats, onions and other bulb veg should be avoided at all costs. If you want to give your dog a little cranberry sauce atop their meat, then make sure it is pure cranberry sauce and free of sweeteners, additives, etc. Vegetables that your canine friends can enjoy include sprouts, carrots, peas, parsnips, green beans, and small amounts of broccoli and cauliflower.

Potatoes: Cooked potato that is mashed or boiled can be fed to your dog in small amounts. It’s important to limit quantities of potato given as it is very starchy, and a dog’s digestive system struggles to digest starch effectively. Another point to remember is that, if you’re mashing your dog’s potato, then do NOT use butter or anything else added – keep it plain, unsalted, and simple.

Chocolate: Like it is to cats, chocolate is very dangerous to dogs. This is because it contains Theobromine, which can be deadly to dogs in even the tiniest chunks. Avoid giving your dog this at all costs.

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