What to Know
Security will be tight at this year's Thanksgiving Parade, with more than 3,000 cops assigned to the parade detail
For the first time, every cross street along the parade route will be blocked off to prevent an attack similar to the one in Nice, France
Dogs will sniff the crowd for traces of explosives
When the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade steps off Thursday morning, a balloon dubbed Trixie the Dog will bounce above a crowd of 3.5 million wide-eyed New Yorkers and tourists.
On the jammed streets down below, eight real dogs will be hard at work keeping the crowds safe by using their ultra-sensitive noses to sniff out the merest whiff of explosives, NBC News reports.
They're called "vapor wake" dogs and they are a key part of the NYPD's sweeping plan to make sure the worst thing that happens on Thanksgiving is an overcooked turkey.
Also, for the first time, every cross street along the parade route will be blocked off, extra insurance that a vehicle cannot be used to attack the crowds as in the deadly July assault in Nice, France. Eighty-three sanitation trucks filled with as much as 16 tons of sand will serve as barriers, police said.