Like many pet parents, we love to give our fur baby a special plate on Thanksgiving. It is super important, however, to make sure that the goodies we are sharing are safe for dogs. Here is a quick reference of safe and unsafe Thanksgiving foods for dogs so that you can ensure everyone in the family has a Happy Thanksgiving!
Safe if… Thanksgiving Foods for Dogs
Turkey – Safe if….
You can share a bit of turkey with your fur baby IF it is cooked and has no skin or fat. (The fats of meat can cause pancreatitis in dogs.) Unseasoned meat is safest, as garlic and onions are toxic to dogs. Also, dogs should not eat salt. And please, NO TURKEY BONES! These are a choking hazard, and you sure don’t want to have to take a trip to the emergency vet on Thanksgiving!
Mashed Potatoes – Safe if…
Mashed potatoes are okay to share IF they have not been seasoned with sour cream, butter, or gravy. Also, remember that garlic is toxic to dogs, and they shouldn’t eat salt.
Bread – Safe if…
Sharing plain, cooked bread is safe for your dogs. But please, do not feed them raw dough or bread that has butter on it. And garlic bread is a NO because garlic is toxic to dogs.
Green Beans – Safe if…
Plain, unseasoned, unsalted green beans are a great treat for your dog! But green bean casserole, the Thanksgiving favorite topped with French’s Onions and cooked with mushroom soup, is not. Not only are onions toxic to dogs, but so are mushrooms.
Eggs – Safe if…
Plain, cooked eggs are safe to give your fur baby. But deviled eggs are not because of the seasonings.
Cranberry Sauce – Safe if…
It’s okay to share a little cranberry sauce with your fur baby. But don’t give them too much because of the sugar.
Pumpkin Pureé – Safe if…
A spoonful of pumpkin pureé is good for your dog’s digestive system. (Just don’t feed them too much or it could cause diarrhea.) Pumpkin pie is not safe, though, because it has too much sugar and other seasonings which may be harmful to dogs.
Unsafe Thanksgiving Foods for Dogs
Ham – Unsafe
Ham has too much salt, so it is not healthy for dogs. The salt can cause them to become dehydrated, so they might quickly gulp too much water. In large dogs, this is especially dangerous, as it could cause bloat.
Sausage – Unsafe
Sausage is seasoned too much to safely feed it to your fur baby.
Stuffing – Unsafe
Stuffing often contains onions and other seasonings, such as garlic, which are toxic to dogs.
Gravy – Unsafe
Gravy has too much salt and other seasonings which may be toxic to dogs. If you share a bit of plain turkey (see above) or plain mashed potatoes (see above), skip the gravy. Your fur baby doesn’t need it!
Stuffed Mushrooms – Unsafe
Mushrooms are toxic to dogs. Plus, the seasoning in the stuffing may contain garlic, also toxic to dogs.
Corn – Unsafe
Never give your dog a corncob, as this is a major choking hazard.
Fruit Salad – Unsafe
Fruits’ seeds and pits inflame dogs’ tummies. Plus, plums, peaches, grapes, and raisins are toxic to dogs.
Chocolate Cream Pie – Unsafe
Chocolate is toxic to dogs, plus they shouldn’t eat too much sugar.
Pecan Pie – Unsafe
Nuts are a big no-no with dogs. And again, they don’t need the sugar.
Sweet Potato Pie – Unsafe
I think you get the idea. Human desserts are not healthy for our fur babies. (But if you want to make dessert for your four-legged kiddo, try these Peanut Butter Coconut Oil Dog Treats.)
Onions, Garlic, Nuts – Unsafe
When deciding if you can share any human food with your dog, think about whether it has been seasoned with onions, garlic, and/or nuts. If it has, then you shouldn’t feed it to your fur baby.
Wine / Alcohol / Booze of any kind – Unsafe
Although I believe this should go without saying, never give your fur baby any type of alcohol or wine. Enough said.
A Safe & Healthy Thanksgiving Meal for your Fur Baby
Unfortunately, the above list shows that many traditional Thanksgiving staples are not safe to feed dogs. In fact, if you want to share treats with your fur baby on Thanksgiving, it takes some forethought, as many seasonings are not healthy for them.
Because we want to keep our Maddie safe, we will set aside some green beans before we make the green bean casserole, a bit of mashed potatoes before we add the seasonings, and a hardboiled egg before they become deviled. I’ll give her a small amount of cooked turkey (just the meat with no fat, bones, or gravy) and some plain, cooked bread (with no butter). I know our Maddie’s tummy can handle small portions of these foods. But if I’m ever in doubt, I don’t share the food with Maddie. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
So, enjoy the holiday and yummy foods! Just make sure to keep a close eye on your fur baby if you share foods with them, especially if you don’t normally give them people food. And if you have any type of pet emergency on Thanksgiving, make sure to contact your local emergency veterinarian immediately!