What Thanksgiving foods are safe for your dog/cat to eat?

Amarillo, TX (KAMR/KCIT) – Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate with friends, family, and beloved animals, but what food is safe for your pet to eat when it’s begging for a festive treat? The American Kennel Club has released some tips about foods to avoid and which foods are safe to give your dog and (or) cat this Thanksgiving.

Here are the main tips provided by the American Kennel Club:

  • Vets tend to see many sick people on Thanksgiving, due to dogs being fed unsafe human food.
  • Turkey, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin are all safe and healthy foods to share with your dog.
  • Bones, sweets, alcohol and fatty foods are all things dogs should avoid.

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) recommends keeping turkey bones away from your dog because they can cause damage to your pet’s digestive system.

Gary Richter, MS, DVM Author The ultimate guide to pet health: advanced nutrition and integrated care For dogs and cats Veterinary health expert with Rover, Sara Ochoa, DVM, Texas Small and Exotic Animal Veterinarian, and Jerry Klein of American Kennel Club and Emergency and Critical Care veterinarian, provides a list of safe foods for your dog to enjoy on Thanksgiving via the American Kennel Club.

  • sweet potato They are a great source of dietary fiber, vitamin B6, vitamin C and beta-carotene,” says Dr. Richter. “Sweet potato treats can be as simple as chewing on dried sweet potatoes.” Just remember not to give your pet sweet potatoes that contain any added ingredients.
  • Potato A great option for your pet, but serve only boiled or baked potatoes without butter, sour cream, salt or pepper, and serve in moderation.
  • An apple “They’re full of vitamins A and C and contain a lot of great fiber, making them a healthy Thanksgiving treat for your pet,” says Dr. Richter. “However, if you share an apple with your dog, be sure to cut out the core, as large amounts of apple seeds can be toxic.”
  • Turkey meat (without bones, without skin). For those wondering if dogs can eat turkey at Thanksgiving, the answer is yes. It’s okay to serve the main course “as long as it’s not prepared with any seasonings,” says Dr. Ochoa. It is important to avoid the bones as discussed above, and Dr. Klein advises skipping the skin feeding because the meat is likely to be prepared with butter and fatty ingredients.
  • Green beans. “With high amounts of vegetable fiber, manganese, and vitamins C and K, plain green beans are great for dogs,” says Dr. Richter. The key here, as with the turkey, sweet potatoes, and other options on this list, is that the bean casserole should be plain—without any added ingredients like butter or seasonings. Pea cream should be avoided.
  • Pumpkin It is itself a very healthy snack,” Dr. Richter explains. “Pumpkin helps with digestive health and is great for your dog’s skin and fur. Also, if you’re feeding canned pumpkin, make sure it’s just vegetable pumpkin and not spiced pancake mix.”
  • candy Like frozen yogurt, with calcium, protein, and live bacteria, it’s a healthy after-dinner food choice for your pet, according to Dr. Richter.

According to Dr. Richter, Dr. Ochoa, Dr. Klein, and the AVMA, the following list of foods should not be served to your dog on Thanksgiving due to unsafe or unhealthy ingredients:

  • Turkey bones, skin, and broth
  • filling
  • casseroles
  • Mashed potato
  • Creamy peas
  • Chocolate, biscuits, pies, sweets (especially anything containing xylitol)
  • alcoholic beverages
  • raisins and grapes
  • Onions, onions and garlic
  • pork
  • yeast dough
  • fatty foods
  • Foods that contain spices

Click here for additional information on the best and worst Thanksgiving foods for cats.

If your pet eats something that is unsafe, contact your local vet or the Pet Poison Helpline.

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