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Pigskin party menus aren't for pets

 

Special to The Dispatch

 

 

With conference championship games being played today and the Super Bowl on Feb. 4, there are sure to be a fair share of house watch parties. Football fare is nearly irresistible for dogs -- especially when sitting at eye-level -- but even cats can grab a piece of the action. Unfortunately, furry fans who intercept game day grub are likely to catch more than they bargained for. Pet parents can find themselves at the emergency room, dishing out cash to treat their sick pup instead of high fives for great plays. 

 

Petplan pet insurance encourages would-be revelers with pets to think carefully when serving the following: 

 

  • Brew-hoo: Just like people, some animals have a taste for beer. But think twice before pouring your pet a pint: even a nip can cause fatal respiratory depression.  

     

  • No bones about it: Chicken wings have especially fine bones, which can splinter easily and puncture the GI tract. Besides, the sauces are virtually guaranteed to cause an upset stomach. 

     

  • Not fun-ion: Onion rings are doubly dangerous: onions in any form are poisonous to pets and fried foods can cause diarrhea. 

     

  • (Don't) pick 'em: Toothpicks make a nice presentation for cubed meats, cheeses and other appetizers, but can cause severe and potentially fatal damage to pets' GI tracts, if swallowed. 

     

  • Aw, nuts: Many nut varieties have a devastating effect on dogs' nervous systems. Walnuts and macadamias are especially toxic and can cause vomiting, paralysis and even death. 

     

    Costs for pet parents can range from an average of $830 for treating onion toxicity to thousands of dollars for GI tract surgery. 

     

     

     

    Tips  

     

    Staff veterinarians for Petplan offer these tips for avoiding a costly trip to the ER.  

     

  • Start with a game plan: For some pets, the temptation may simply be too great. If that's the case, seek alternative arrangements before hosting, or consider leaving your pet at home, if attending. 

     

  • Watch the turnovers: When begging doesn't work, dogs may resort to playing smart and aggressive. Encourage guests to minimize the risk of fumbling food by sitting at a table or using snack trays. 

     

  • A good offense: Keep pet-friendly snacks handy for hounds with hungry eyes.  

     

  • Keep an eye on unattended plates and cups and make sure to clean up promptly. Sufficiently motivated dogs will run the end-around without a second thought.

     

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