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The Truth About Feeding Turkey to Dogs

The Truth About Feeding Turkey to Dogs: What You Need to Know

Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and we know for many families, it’s all about the bird! We also realize you’ll likely be spending the holiday with loved ones, and that includes your furry family members, too. In this guide, we give you the inside scoop on feeding Thanksgiving turkey to your dogs.


The Truth About Feeding Turkey to Dogs: What You Need to Know

Can Your Dog Eat Turkey?

Let’s get the immediate answer out of the way first. It depends on how the turkey is cooked and what you add to it that determines if it’s safe for dogs.

Many people cook turkeys for this holiday, but they’re rarely prepared plain. If you’re going to stuff your Thanksgiving bird with onions and garlic, we’d suggest you skip the sharing. These are toxic ingredients for pets and can be a recipe for disaster rather than a happy holiday.

Safely Feeding Your Dog Turkey

Now that we’ve gotten the quick answers out of the way, how you feed your dog is crucial. Remember, seasonings can be dangerous, so giving your furry friends anything with blends that contain onions, garlic, chives, or the like can be toxic.

When sharing that sumptuous turkey, remember to skip the skin. The fat and seasonings can cause serious problems, like pancreatitis, or less severe issues like stomach upset.

Don’t go overboard on sharing. We know it’s hard to resist those adorable, begging eyes, but you must be strong. Feed small quantities of turkey to your dog, as new food can also cause severe gastrointestinal issues when given in large amounts.

Always check for small bones. Sometimes these can be hidden, and you won’t know they are there until your dog swallows one. These bones are brittle and can cause all sorts of injuries, like intestinal bleeding, blockages, and choking.

Additional Foods To Avoid

In addition to turkey, there are typical sides that accompany Thanksgiving meals. You’ll want to use caution and not feed these to your dog as they are toxic and can cause kidney damage and other irreversible, sometimes fatal damage.

  • Dairy – while plain potatoes are fine, you don’t want to give your best pal mashed potatoes as the dairy included can cause lactose issues.
  • Grapes and raisins – never give your dog anything from the grape family. Eating grapes, raisins, or currants can cause life-threatening issues.
  • Chocolate desserts – although pumpkin pies are the norm, many people include chocolate desserts. Chocolate is toxic to dogs and is an ingredient they should never ingest.

Keeping Your Dog Included

It may seem like a bummer that your dogs can’t have all the tasty treats you get with the Thanksgiving holiday, but that doesn’t mean you have to leave them out. Jeffers has plenty of turkey treats for dogs that will please even the pickiest pooch.

By following the tips in this article, you can safely feed your dog turkey and some tasty treats without having a holiday emergency. We know one of the things you’re most thankful for this holiday season is the love of your dog. With these strategies, your family pet can be part of the celebration.