Thanksgiving Dinner for Your Pets – What’s Safe and What Isn’t!
17 November, 2016
dog and cat Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is almost here and of course, the best part is the food. Who doesn’t love a Thanksgiving dinner with all the fixings!  We all know that our pets will be right there with us while we cook and eat; therefore, it is important to choose wisely of what your dog or cat samples.  And, as always with human food, less is more!

Whatever you decide to feed your dogs or cat, remember that plain is good and sauces are bad!

Turkey with no skin!

Turkey is a great lean protein to share with your cat or dog. Make sure to remove any excess skin or fat, stick with white meat, and look out for bones.  Make sure it is cooked enough.

Pumpkin is good your dogs and cats and great for digestion

Pumpkin is good for dogs and cats to eat not only because its’ healthy, bursting with vitamins, beta carotene and fiber, but also because it helps with digestion.

Mashed and Sweet Potatoes

Potatoes are a great, filling vegetable to share with your pet. However even though the potatoes themselves are not harmful to pets, be aware of additional ingredients used to make mashed potatoes.  Same with sweet potatoes.  Plain and cooked!


Plain stuffing is fine for your dogs and cats.  But, most of us add garlic, onions and mushrooms which are very dangerous for your pets (see below).


Nothing wrong with some raw carrots and broccoli for your pets.  Just make sure they are chopped properly.  A great way to get some vitamins. Corn – without the cob is good as are green beans.

Dough and cake batter can be harmful – baked rolls are OK…

While most of us wouldn’t choose to give our pets’ raw dough, your dogs or cats might get into it while you are cooking.  It is very hard for your pets to digest raw dough and it can sit in their stomach for days.  If a roll falls on the floor, a little bread doesn’t hurt your pets!

Nuts are very dangerous

Walnuts and nuts are very dangerous for your dogs.  They can cause ‘macadamia nut toxicosis’ if ingested.  Within twelve hours of eating them, your dog can go into shock and have tremors. They will usually go away, but don’t ever let your dog eat either of these nuts.

Mushrooms, onions and garlic are very dangerous for your pet.

Mushrooms are very dangerous for your pets. If your dog or cat ingests mushrooms, you can expect a slew of side effects that could become quite severe, including vomiting, seizures, coma and possibly death.    Both onions and garlic contain sulfides, which are toxic to dogs and can cause the destruction of red blood cells, leading to anemia.  This is the same for cats. Garlic does not digest well.

Sage and Nutmeg

Sage contains oils and resins that can upset a dog’s stomach and eventually his central nervous system.  When cooking with sage, make sure your dog and/or cat are not in the kitchen. Cats are especially sensitive to the effects of certain essential oils.

Nutmeg has mild hallucinogenic properties that, when ingested, can cause seizures, tremors and central nervous system problems.

Cranberry sauce is a ‘no’ for your pets.

A lot of cranberry sauces aren’t just the popular stuff we see come right out of the can. Nuts, raisins, sugar and even pineapple is added to many recipes and even just plain cranberry sauce has too much sugar making it a ‘no’ for our pets.

Chocolate, xylitol or any other dessert

As most dog owners know, chocolate is also very, very bad for dogs. Never feed your dog chocolate on Thanksgiving or any other occasion.  And most pies are not suitable for your pets.  The dough and extra ingredients can make them sick.

On Thanksgiving dinner and while cooking, just watch the ‘no’ list and always remember that less is more.  A little sampling doesn’t hurt our pets as long it’s not of the dangerous sort!

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