November is a month of giving thanks, and what better way to express gratitude to the canine member of your family than by treating them to some delicious Thanksgiving snacks? As you prepare your holiday feast, it's essential to keep in mind that not all Thanksgiving foods are safe for your dog. Let’s explore five surprising yes-please foods that your pup can enjoy and discuss five heck no's to avoid sharing with your four-legged companion.
5 Surprising Yes-Please Foods for Your Pup
Turkey Delight: When it comes to Thanksgiving, turkey is the star of the show. Fortunately, your dog can – thoughtfully – be invited to partake in this festive delight too! Turkey is an excellent source of protein. Serve your dog some tasty morsels (no slabs of leftovers), boneless, cooked, with the fatty skin removed, and without any seasonings, especially those that are toxic to dogs, like garlic and onions.
Mashed Magic: Cooked potatoes are another Thanksgiving staple that your dog can enjoy. In particular, mashed potatoes can be a tasty and safe treat. But before you dish out a dollop as a topper on your dog’s kibble, think about what you put in there. Did you heap in lots of butter, cream, and garlic? It’s important to ensure they are plain, without butter, milk, or added seasonings which could upset your pup's tummy. So, before you start working your seasoning magic, scoop a little plain potato out of the pot to save as a treat for your dog.
Joyful Green Beans: Green beans are a healthy, low-calorie option that you can share with your dog. These crisp and green veggies are packed with vitamins and fiber. Steamed or blanched green beans make a delightful, crunchy treat for your pup. Just make sure they're not cooked in any sauces containing onions or garlic. Some dogs even love them raw! Snap them into small pieces – whole raw beans can be a choking hazard.
Cranberry Cheers: Cranberries are a Thanksgiving favorite and can offer some health benefits to your dog in moderation. Both fresh or unsweetened and dried, cranberries are a good source of antioxidants and can help support your pup's urinary health when offered as an occasional treat. Steer clear of the sugary, processed cranberry products that often accompany holiday meals. Excess sugar can be harmful to your dog.
Pumpkin Power: Fresh or canned pumpkin is a versatile food that is not only delicious but also nutritious for your pup. It's rich in fiber and vitamins and can aid in digestion. Serving your dog plain, cooked pumpkin in small quantities can be a delightful way to incorporate this superfood into their diet. Just be sure to avoid canned pumpkin pie filling or leftover pie, as it undoubtedly contains added sugars and spices. Want to learn more about the power of pumpkin? Learn More
Heck No's – Foods to avoid sharing with your dog
While it's wonderful to treat your dog to some Thanksgiving goodies, there are certain foods that should never find their way onto your pet's holiday plate.
No Raisin to Risk It (Grapes, too): Grapes and raisins can be extremely toxic to dogs, even in small quantities. They can lead to kidney failure and severe illness. So, when creating your Thanksgiving spread, ensure that these small yet potent snacks are well out of your dog's reach.
Onion Ouchies: Onions, whether raw, cooked, or as part of a dish, should be strictly avoided when sharing food with your dog. They contain compounds that can damage a dog's red blood cells, potentially leading to life-threatening anemia.
Dough and Batter Blunders: Unbaked dough containing yeast is a dangerous no-no for your dog. When ingested, the yeast can expand the dough in the stomach, causing discomfort and potentially even twisting of the stomach, which is a life-threatening condition. Keep your pup away from dough or batter in any form.
It’s a Zero for Xylitol: Xylitol is a sugar substitute often found in sugar-free gum, candies, baked goods, and even in some brands of peanut butter. Sometimes you’ll find it labeled as “birch sugar.” This sugar alternative is extremely toxic to dogs, as it can lead to a rapid release of insulin, causing a dangerous drop in blood sugar. Make sure to check ingredient labels and keep xylitol-containing products well out of reach.
Chocolate Catastrophe: It's pretty well-known that chocolate is toxic to dogs, but when candy bowls and cookie jars are full during the autumn and winter holidays, we sometimes forget the danger. Theobromine and caffeine in chocolate can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, increased heart rate, seizures, and even death in severe cases. So, even though chocolate may be an integral part of your fall celebrations, be vigilant and ensure that your dog doesn’t get their paws on it.
Fill your dog’s treat jar with Nature’s Animals goodness this Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving is a time for gratitude and sharing, and there's no reason why your dog can't join in on the festivities if you stick to ‘yes please’ ingredients. If you’d rather not have to worry about what’s safe and what’s not, turn to treats
from Nature’s Animals instead! Our Fit Bits Bones provide the mouth-watering Thanksgiving goodness of cranberry and pumpkin and a satisfying crunch. And at only 5 calories a treat, you won’t have to loosen your dog’s collar a notch when the holidays have passed.
As you gather around the table this November, remember to share the love and joy of the season with your pup, while keeping their health and safety in mind. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your loyal canine companion from all of us here at Nature’s Animals!