Thanksgiving Foods Dangerous to Dogs

Pumpkin costume? Yes. Pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving? NO!
Pumpkin costume? Yes. Pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving? NO!

The family is gathered around the table, plates groaning under the weight of turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and all the usual fixins for the fall harvest holiday. It’s a time when we all go just a bit beyond our usual consumption, so why shouldn’t our furry friends enjoy the same?

Because many of the foods we so enjoy at this time of year are downright bad for bowser. In some cases, the food can be fatal.

Even if you’re not planning to feed your dog scraps directly off the table (which we’ll talk about another time in terms of the negative impact such activity has on overall training), here is a short list of some traditional food items that will likely grace your Thanksgiving table that should be kept away from your pup.

  • Turkey skin, turkey drippings, turkey gravy – These high-fat items may taste oh-so-good to you, and even to your dog, but the incredibly high-fat content can lead to diarrhea and vomiting. There is also a high risk of triggering pancreatitis by feeding your dog food saturated in fat.
  • Turkey twine – this should be a no-brainer, but besides the fatty and salty saturation on the twine, this stuff can end up tangling up in your dog’s insides.
  • Turkey bones – Bird bones in general, especially cooked ones, are soft and splinter easily. This adds up to potential disaster in terms of cutting or even puncturing a dog’s gastrointestinal tract. The chances of blockage are also high. So don’t just be mindful of not directly feeding your dog turkey bones, but make sure that you secure the garbage can where they’ve been thrown!
  • Raisins and grapes – Staples of many stuffings, side dishes and desserts, grapes, their less saturated cousins the raisin, and their even less well-known cousin the currant are toxic for most dogs. There is no specific data as to why these fruits can cause acute and rapid renal failure in dogs, some suggest it has something to do with the skins. Whatever the case, don’t roll the dice on this one.
  • Pumpkin pie, glazed sweet potatoes – When your dog is sick sometimes the vet will recommend using canned pumpkin or yam or sweet potato as something gentle for their tummy. This suggestion does not extend to the sugar-saturated edition of pumpkin that appears in any number of desserts this holiday season nor to the traditional baked and glazed sweet potato dish that graces most tables.

For the full list of items to keep away from your pup’s curious nose during the holidays and more information on what to do should your dog ingest anything dangerous, come on over and join Canine Conversations – a new, private community for folks who are looking to up-level their relationship with their dog. Details about canine communication, training tips, nutrition and wellness, online seminars and workshops, lifestyle topics and access to industry leaders, along with connecting with a community of like-minded pup parents from all around the US and world.

While we are firm advocates of treating our pups … spoiling them, even … the simple fact is that just as most of the foods we consume for Thanksgiving aren’t really altogether good for us, a dog’s rapid metabolism along with the way in which their bodies break down fatty food, make the majority of the delights for you downright dangerous for your dog. If you want to be kind to your pup this Thanksgiving holiday, give them more belly rubs, a longer romp in the park and maybe even let them sleep in your bed.