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How to Make a Pet-Friendly Thanksgiving Dinner

Updated: Nov 5, 2021



The joyful Thanksgiving season is here and most pet owners would put their dog at the top of their list of things they’re grateful for. So it’s natural to want to share the yummy delights of this holiday with your canine companion. But in order to have a truly safe Thanksgiving dinner for dogs, you need to have a menu of dog-friendly Thanksgiving food and know some of the dangers presented by this holiday celebration.


Things you can include on your pet's plate:


Turkey breast (shredded) – Every balanced meal includes some protein. Select turkey from the middle of the breast because it is least likely to have absorbed the fatty, salty brine and leave the skin off. The high-fat content and salt in the skin can make your dog sick.

Sweet potatoes – Sweet potatoes are high in beta-carotene and fiber. Mash up some of the boiled sweet potatoes before any butter or spices are added.

Gravy – Just because you can't use the gravy from the table doesn't mean your furry pet has to go without this delicious condiment. You can make a dog-friendly gravy using canned dog food or purchase a pre-made gravy made for dogs.

Carrots – they are low in calorie and high in fiber and vitamin A. They are also high in sugar though so you may want to skip them if your dog is diabetic. Steam or boil them and place a couple of unseasoned ones on the plate.

Green Beans – Green beans are filling and low calorie. Make sure you use fresh or frozen green beans with no seasoning.

Cranberries – they are a great source of antioxidants and can add a fun burst of flavor to your dog's plate. Not all dogs like cranberries though so I would try adding just a few as a desert or topping.

Apple slices – Apples are a sweet treat for your pup. Save a few slices if you make apple pie and chop them up or mash them for your pup. Just make sure you have removed the seeds and skin.

Pumpkin – it can help regulate your dog's digestive tract. That's probably helpful after a Thanksgiving meal containing foods they don't eat regularly. Whether the pumpkin is steamed, baked, or canned make sure that nothing has been added to it. Once you're gathered the Thanksgiving foods you are going to share with your furry pet, you can arrange them on the plate so it resembles the way family dishes up theirs. Just remember to keep the portion sizes small if you are using several different foods so you don't stuff your pup with foods their tummy is not used to. And remember, there are several common foods that are harmful to dogs. The ones that usually find their way to the Thanksgiving dinner table are:

  • Onions and garlic

  • Mushrooms

  • Raisins

  • Cooked bones

  • Heavy fats like butter and turkey skin

  • Alcohol

  • Nutmeg













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