When it comes to Thanksgiving there is one thing that comes to mind every single time – turkey! At Thanksgiving, it is a time of giving thanks, sharing with loved ones, and carving a delicious turkey for dinner. But what about our dogs? How do they get included in these festivities?
For many of us, our dogs are as much a part of the family as any human member. And that means that we want them to have the good stuff in life. Yes, that might also mean the turkey.
As we get deeper into the holiday season, and especially on Thanksgiving, you may be wondering whether or not it was actually safe for our dogs to eat turkey. Luckily, we have the answer!
Is it safe to give my dog turkey?
Considering turkey is often a main ingredient in many dog foods, you might think that the answer is a straight up yes. But, just because turkey is safe to feed to our dogs, that doesn’t mean we can just take a piece of turkey off the Thanksgiving table and give it to our pup.
The reason for this is seasoning and fats. The only turkey our dogs should be eating is plain, unseasoned white meat.
As the AKC explained,
"Thanksgiving turkeys, however, are rarely cooked plain. We rub our birds with butter and oils and season them with salt, pepper, herbs, and spices. We stuff them full of onions, garlic, and more. To humans, this is delicious. For our dogs, these ingredients can be toxic and a recipe for unpleasant digestive upset or pancreatitis."
However, that doesn’t rule out giving a piece of Thanksgiving turkey to our pups. There are just some things we absolutely need to be mindful of.
If you are wanting to give your pup a small piece of the Thanksgiving bird, make sure that there is no skin included in the morsel. Also, make sure that there are no onions or anything else you may have used to add flavor to the bird. Onions are actually toxic to our dogs so if you are cooking with them, make sure you keep them far away from your furry friends.
It is also important to keep the amount of turkey you are feeding your pup to a very small amount. If you really want to share some turkey with your pup on Thanksgiving, you are better off getting them a dog food that already uses the bird as one of their main ingredients. We have chosen FreshPet‘s Vital Grain-Free Turkey Recipe with Cranberries & Blueberries for Dogs in the past for our staff pup and she has loved it. (And as an added bonus there are some other Thanksgiving flavors included in this mix.)
The final thing you should be paying attention to is the bones. Turkey bones are not safe for dogs in anyway. They can shatter while a dog is chewing them and that leads to shards that can do tremendous damage to our pup.
Honestly, while we love spoiling our pups, especially during the holidays, we are all about making sure that what we are giving them is also safe. And that means that if you do want to spoil your pup with a bit of turkey, make sure that you are giving them the plainest piece of white meat you can find.