Thanksgiving is a time of giving thanks and showing appreciation to those in our lives. We are usually grateful for everything from the clothes on our backs to having our furry pets in our lives.
Family members get to meet, share, laugh, catch up, and have the spirit of togetherness over a sumptuous feast of turkey. If you’re wondering about ways to make your furry friends feel more included, I got you covered.
Below are 10 fun activities to do with dogs on Thanksgiving day.
Parades and thanksgiving match together. Most places usually have a parade.
Check if there are parades in your area and join in on the fun with your whole family and furry pets. Do keep the weather into consideration.
If it’s cold remember to drape something warm around your pet. You don’t want them to replace all the fun with shivering.
Enrichment games are good for mentally stimulating your dogs’ minds and improving their mental capabilities. They also boost their physical and emotional health.
Play games with them as they’ll enjoy that bonding time and won’t get bored. You could also give them toys like stuffed kongs and snuffle mats that will keep them occupied for a good amount of time.
As you prepare thanksgiving meals, prepare a separate thanksgiving-special dog-friendly dish for your dogs so that they won’t indulge in human food. During dinner time, have your dogs eating as the family members are dining to avoid a couple of begging eyes near the table.
You can make it interesting for your pets by putting the food in a food puzzle. This will ensure they take their time eating.
Other family members could be tempted to give them table scraps. Do let them know that they shouldn’t do that.
Most importantly do not give the pets turkey skin because it’s highly fatty, or turkey stuffing. Great alternatives are the turkey breast, potatoes, and peas.
Other no-feed foods for dogs that may be around are onions, garlic, artificial sweeteners, alcohol, or chocolate. Do not feed them to the pets no matter how begging their eyes look.
4. Thanksgiving costume
As you get thanksgiving outfits for the family, do not forget to get some cute ones for these furry ones. You can dress them up like turkeys for a fun evening which will awe your guests.
Be creative. Your dogs will enjoy the attention they get from the guests as they pat their heads and compliment their outfits.
Always make sure that the costumes fit well. They should not be tight, or restrict movement or give pets a hard time going for bathroom breaks.
5. Family introductions
It’s possible that not every family member has met your pets. Have a meet and greet session for your pets and family members.
Introduce them to each other. Chances are, the kids will be overexcited to meet them, or scared of them.
Tell everyone all they need to know about the pets and show them how to greet them. You could even teach them fun games that dogs like to play.
Introductions are great because family members and kids can get to bond with your pets as you prepare food in the kitchen. The pets won’t be all over stepping on your toes as you bring food to the table because they’ll be wonderfully distracted.
Football is a common family tradition during thanksgiving. If families are not watching football they are playing it.
If the weather is conducive to you, you can have a little football match. Some people though wouldn’t mind playing out in the snow or rain.
Get your dogs excited right before the game by talking excitedly to them. Our excitement tends to rub off on our pups.
The pets will enjoy running around trying to catch the ball too and they will excitedly run after the person with the ball. Give them a treat after the game to show them that they did great and keep them looking forward to the next one.
7. TV Time
You can cuddle up with your pets for some good old tv time. Television stations have various thanksgiving programs going on like Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade or American Football.
You could also watch the National Dog Show. Talking to your dogs about the competitions going on will get them excited about the dogs on the telly too.
Even if they won’t pay much attention to what’s going on, they will love being near you.
8. Fall Leaves
If you have fall leaves strewn all over your backyard, a fun activity would be having kids rake up the leaves into piles. Then they can play with the dogs in the piles of fall leaves.
You could also join in the fun too. The dogs will enjoy jumping all around and diving in the piles. They will also have fun sniffing them and chasing a lone leaf drifting in the air.
You can tag pets along during the thanksgiving decoration activities. You could begin by going shopping for the decorations with them.
Then you can have them around as you decorate. Let them watch or play nearby.
Be careful though because some of these decoration pieces could be tiny or tempting for your dogs and they could ingest them. Try to decorate a little higher, away from their reach.
After all the thanksgiving indulging, it would be a great idea to go out for a walk to burn the gained calories. Dogs will enjoy these walks a lot.
You could even go for a hike during the day. It will be a wonderful adventure not only for you but also for the dogs who will love exploring and chasing little animals.
Thanksgiving is a good time to be together and express gratitude for having each other in our lives. It’s a great thing to show our furry family members that they matter to us too.
After all, they love us more than the world itself. Let them know you appreciate them.
You could even do things they love like taking time to rub their bellies, scratch their chins, or practice those tricks they enjoy doing.