Choosing Your Pet To Eat A Traditional Christmas Lunch

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\\\ updated November 2021

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YOUR PETS CHRISTMAS MEAL

Is it safe to feed a roast turkey meal to your pet?

Your Pet’s Christmas Menu

Since 2020 there’s been an enormous rise in new pet owners across the UK, where Covid-19 has re-shaped many peoples’ lives at work and home, reported by numerous articles, with similar reports globally.

The PFMA, Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association, suggests more than 3 million more pets now reside in the UK, bringing the totals to 12 million dogs and 12 million cats, and a million pet rabbits.

That’s a lot of pet mouths to feed every day, and why business is booming for new pet food companies including handmade, artisan, and subscription pet food businesses, so offering special meals for Christmas is an important service.

It may be your pet’s first Christmas and you’ve planned to serve up a traditional Christmas lunch so both can enjoy the festivities together.

STOP!

Pet owners love pets to join in celebrations but inadvertently may be giving them the wrong foods that lead to necessary emergency visits to the vet.

Vets report seeing up to an additional 30% of pet owners during the month of December where most pet A&E accidents are Christmas related, many of those due to serving up our Christmas festivity rich traditional human food and alcohol in abundance to our pets, and you don’t want to waste your time at their surgery when you have family and guests visiting.

What Is A Traditional Christmas Lunch?

A traditional human UK Christmas lunch can vary, the British Study Centre provides a list of the most popular 10 foods.

Most households enjoy roast turkey served with brussels sprouts, roast potatoes, parsnips, red cabbage, carrots, ‘pigs in blankets’, redcurrant, jelly, cranberry sauce, a selection of seasoned stuffing, and gravy.

Variations to this include ham, roast beef and sometimes a salmon fish starter. Some families also enjoy a Yorkshire pudding served with their main course.

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Dessert is usually a traditional Christmas pudding made from dried fruits likely to have been soaked in brandy or other liqueur, cream, brandy sauce, or ice cream, topped with more dried fruit when finishing the meal with mince pies and there’s plenty of alcohol to match the courses being eaten.

What Are The Good Foods That Pets Can Eat At Christmas?

There are some roasted MEATS and cooked FISH which are fine for cats and dogs to eat in moderation as a treat without bones, butter, fat, sauces, and seasonings having been added.

Turkey – Skinless and boneless
Lamb beef and pork – with all the fat trimmed off
Fresh cooked Salmon (preferably not smoked salmon)

VEGETABLES that can be eaten as a small treat by healthy dogs, those not on special diets or have allergies include

Green beans
Carrots
Swedes
Brussel Sprouts
New Potatoes
Mash Potatoes (no butter)
Peas
Swede

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Cats are carnivores, they eat meat to survive. A small amount of lean turkey, ham (in very small pieces), or beef can be eaten which hasn’t been seasoned or served with any sauces. No vegetables or desserts.

Don’t forget, your pet will be smelling delicious food cooking for several hours and will be wide awake and, cosying up nearby!

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Rabbits are herbivores and do not eat meat, only selected raw vegetables served as a treat alongside their stable quality hay and shop-bought prepared and nutritionally balanced pellet diet should be eaten. They could be given the smallest amount of raw broccoli, brussels sprouts, red cabbage, for example. Carrots are high in sugar content but the smallest amount as a treat can be given and definitely no Christmas pudding or mince pies.

Alcohol is always on the list of definite ‘no’s.’ Just don’t try giving your pet toxic drinks, provide lots of fresh water for them throughout the day.

Ready-made Christmas pet food. You’ll find many of the UK pet food manufacturers, big and small, produce special Christmas meals for pets. Whether you buy from your local supermarket or directly online, most will be offering balanced Christmas pet meals.

DON’T GET DISTRACTED AND LEAVE YOUR FOOD UNATTENDED EITHER IN THE KITCHEN OR ON THE DINING ROOM TABLE FOR A MOMENT.

It only takes a few seconds and you’ll find your hard work being guzzled on the floor!

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