CAN DOGS EAT TURKEY?: Enjoying Thanksgiving With Pets

November 13, 2015

can dogs eat turkey

This Thanksgiving, scores of people will Google questions like: Can dogs eat turkey? Can cats eat pumpkin? And similar holiday-themed pet questions. Fetch! Pet Care wants to be sure you get the right answers so that you and your fur babies can enjoy a healthy and stress-free Thanksgiving.

So, Can Dogs Eat Turkey Or Not?

Ok, first things first. Let’s answer your can dogs eat turkey question straight away. Yes, technically, dogs can eat turkey, but you should avoid giving them the skin as it contains too much fat, which can lead to pancreatitis. They also shouldn’t eat cooked turkey skin since it contains rich seasonings and spices that don’t agree well with your buddy’s tummy. Ditto for cats.

Turkey bones can also splinter in your furball’s stomach and cause internal injuries. With all of this and more in mind, we recommend that you avoid giving your pets any of your Thanksgiving foods at all. However, if you do want to share a little turkey please only allow your bestie a little skinless, boneless taste of the bird…and please note the emphasis on taste.

As you can see, the answer to the can dogs eat turkey question is as much a yes as it is a no. Is turkey bad for dogs and cats? By itself, it is actually a good source of protein. The bones of the turkey and the seasonings on a cooked turkey, however, do make it a less than healthy or safe choice.

So now that we’ve addressed the question can dogs eat turkey?, let’s take a look at a few more foods that you’ll want to avoid sharing with your dogs and cats this Thanksgiving:

  • Grapes
  • Raisins
  • Salt
  • Sage
  • Nutmeg
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Chocolate
  • Anything containing the sweetener xylitol
  • Raw eggs or any batter, dressing, etc. containing raw egg

How To Stop Your Snuggle-Buddy From Begging

A lot of you who are Googling to ask can dogs eat turkey? aren’t doing so merely because you want your pets to share in a little holiday fare. Many of you are hunting for answers because you’ve got two beautiful eyes staring at you and everything about your love bug’s body language is begging for you to share your meal with them. Or maybe your little one is in the kitchen while you are cooking and is volunteering to be your taste-tester. You don’t want to give in, but you feel a sense of obligation to your most loyal companion. We have a solution for you. In fact, we have a couple of solutions that will make for a harmonious holiday with your furball.

can dogs eat turkey

Thanksgiving Foods to Share With Your Pet

Although we don’t recommend sharing your Thanksgiving feast with your fur-ever bud, we know that the whole can dogs eat turkey conversation starts with your intense need to satisfy the one who is always by your side…the one who loves you no matter what…and the one who would never refuse you a single morsel of their food if your roles were reversed. Heck, your cat even brings you freshly caught delicacies pretty regularly, so how can you refuse Her Highness when she wants a little of your gigantic bird? Well, here are some ideas for you:

A Little Pumpkin for Your Little Pumpkin

You may be asking yourself, “OK, so you’ve answered my question, can dogs eat turkey? But what about pumpkin? That’s healthy for dogs, right?” Yes! Cats and dogs love the taste of pumpkin and it is actually good for them. So keep a little extra on hand at Thanksgiving and let them indulge in small portions.

Do not allow them to eat just any pumpkin, though. For example, the pumpkin filling used in your secret pie recipe probably isn’t a good idea as it has added sugars, spices and other ingredients, which may be toxic to your pet. Same applies to pumpkin pies and other desserts containing pumpkin. Instead, offer your furball a taste of natural unsweetened canned pumpkin and watch her fall in love with a new Thanksgiving treat of her own.

In terms of pumpkin being good for cats and dogs, it can actually be used as a home remedy for some pretty nasty conditions. For example, did you know that pumpkin is naturally high in fiber and that pumpkin can be used to treat digestive issues? That it can also help relieve both diarrhea and constipation in cats and dogs? Did you also know that pumpkin contains antioxidants and may actually prevent cancer in pets? Or that adding a little pumpkin to a dog’s diet can help alleviate “scooting” caused by anal gland issues? Pumpkin seeds are even believed to cure worms and parasites in dogs and cats…and humans, too!

Pumpkin is also a healthy way for pets to hydrate. This is especially good for cats who may consume dry food, but not drink much water. Pumpkin can go a long way in keeping their hydration levels at a healthy balance.

Have you been struggling to help your overweight pet trim down? Well, pumpkin can help! As a bulky food, pumpkin gives pets a feeling of being full and helps to stop them from overeating. Used as a dietary supplement, pumpkin can help pets lose a few pounds just by replacing some of the excess food or snacks that they are used to with this amazing veggie.

can dogs eat turkey

Pumpkin is also an excellent source of the vitamins and minerals that your cat or dog needs to stay healthy. Specifically, it is high in vitamins A and C, as well as carotenoids, iron and potassium. So, start a new Thanksgiving tradition by offering your fur kid a healthy treat like pumpkin instead of your turkey and all of its trimmings.

Having now addressed the question: Can dogs eat turkey? And determined that pumpkin is not only a delicious treat, but also healthy for dogs. We may as well tackle another pet-related Thanksgiving food question.

Can Dogs Eat Apples? What About Cats?

Pets with kidney problems should not eat apples. But, yes, healthy dogs and cats can enjoy a bit of fresh, raw apple and it can even be good for them. This applies only to the edible parts of the fruit, however, as the core and seeds contain cyanide which can be extremely harmful or even fatal to a pet.

Apple slices actually help cleanse your pet’s teeth and the vitamins contained in the fruit are excellent for the skin and coat. Apples are a great source of Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids and they are also high in fiber, calcium, phosphorus and vitamin C. So, while you’re whipping up a few tasty thanksgiving treats, let your little one in on the flavor extravaganza by sharing a few apple slices with them.

7 More Ways To Keep Your Pets Safe This Thanksgiving

Before we leave you to enjoy your feast and family, we want to offer you a few more quick tips on how to keep your pet safe this holiday:

  • Do not let your cat or dog overeat.
  • Do not feed your pet from your plate.
  • Do not allow guests to feed your pet.
  • Place pets in another room while dining.
  • Secure trash receptacles so that your cat or dog can’t help himself to leftovers.
  • Avoid stress by providing a quiet place for your companion to retreat to when tired.
  • Hire a sitter if you will be traveling, but never ever leave an animal alone during the holidays.

can dogs eat turkey

Hope We’ve Helped You!

As you can see, the whole can dogs eat turkey question really opens the door to a broader, but much-needed conversation about the dos and don’ts of enjoying the holidays with your most beloved pets. There are ways to include your cat or dog in the holiday tradition if you are armed with information going into the season. We hope that we’ve answered at least some of your most pressing Thanksgiving pet food questions and that you’ll share this post with every animal lover in your life.

If your question wasn’t answered here, please give us a second chance by asking it in the space provided below. And if you have more pet-related holiday tips, by all means tell us about them. Thanks and happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Fetch! Pet Care!

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