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Happy Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving Traditions with Your Dog

by Coach Lilly

Happy Thanksgiving from DoggieNation.com!

Thanksgiving is one of our favorite holidays—a time of fun, family, food, and football. And of course our best four-legged friends love to get in on the action too! Here are some safe and healthy ways you can get your dog involved in the fun of Thanksgiving Day.

 Watch (or play) football.

Football goes with Thanksgiving like the Macy’s Day Parade and pumpkin pie. Get a dog sports jersey for your pet to show your support for your favorite team, and to keep your dog a little warmer in cold November temperatures.

Give your dog a special Thanksgiving treat.

For many families, Thanksgiving revolves around food. However, you should advise any visiting family members against feeding your pet scraps from the table. As delicious as Thanksgiving food is to us humans, this kind of food is not good for your dog. You’re best off sticking with your dog’s regular dog food. You can make sure that your dog has a full meal before your own Thanksgiving dinner begins, and you can even offer her a special Thanksgiving treat that is made especially for dogs. Your veterinarian or local pet store will have good recommendations for healthy dog treats.

 Go on a neighborhood Turkey Trot.

The New York Times reports that Thanksgiving is now the biggest running day of the year, thanks to races hosted in cities across the country. These races can be festive social events, often held to benefit local charities or food drives. If you are not running in an official Turkey Trot race in your city, why not take your dog along on your own neighborhood version? Going for a walk on Thanksgiving Day, before or after the big meal, will help both of you feel better, burn calories, and get some fresh air after spending time indoors. You can even invite family members to come along to make it a family event. This might even turn into a new Thanksgiving tradition for your family.

 Give thanks for your dog.

Our dogs give us so much to be thankful for year-round, but Thanksgiving is a special time to stop and reflect on just how much our dogs mean to us. There’s a reason dogs are famously known as “man’s best friend.” When we do our best to care for them, dogs offer us unconditional love in return. They don’t judge us—they are endlessly accepting and comforting. If you’ve ever felt that no one else could understand you but then felt comforted by the soft snuggle of your dog, you know just how special that love and acceptance is and how much it can mean to a person. The more we remember how thankful we are for our dogs, the more we love them.

Do you have any Thanksgiving traditions that you share with your dog? We would love to hear about them! Talk about your traditions in the comments below.

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