Thanksgiving foods and your dog

Dog gets ready for holiday feastSome pet food purists would never feed their pups table food, while others offer “people” food in small amounts after making sure that the food is safe. If you want your dog to have a taste of Thanksgiving or any meal, be sure that you only serve him foods that are safe and not likely to cause stomach upset. Some common foods can be dangerous and even highly toxic to dogs.

Keep in mind that any new food, even a safe one, can potentially upset your dog’s stomach, so opt for small tastes and portions as a treat instead of plopping turkey and potatoes in front of your pup for a full meal. And soon after dinner, get your EzyDog harness and leash and head out for a walk. It will help you and your dog digest that big dinner.

Meat and Potatoes

The mashed potatoes and turkey you’re probably going to enjoy should be safe for your pet, though it’s best if you give your dog some potatoes before the extras like butter, cream and salt are added. Also, before you prepare potatoes for your own meal, make sure the potatoes have no eyes, tubers or even a greenish tint to the skin. These indicate a high level of solanine, which can make you sick. Just as those things aren’t the healthiest for humans, they’re bad for dogs, too. And a dog’s smaller size means less of the substance can do more harm.

Turkey can be a delicious treat for your pet as long as it’s not heavily seasoned, as well. In fact, turkey might be a dog’s favorite part of the meal. Just avoid offering your dog any fat trimmings. And never give your dog turkey or any other type of poultry bone. Chicken and turkey bones splinter easily and can do a great deal of damage to your dog’s stomach and intestines.

Fruits and Vegetables

Dog eating snap peasMost common Thanksgiving vegetables including potatoes, carrots or green beans should be safe for your pet. Opt for the veggies before condiments are added to avoid upset. Never feed your pet anything containing avocado. The persin in avocados can be toxic to dogs. Also avoid giving your dog anything containing onions and garlic. These can cause anemia. Rhubarb and mushrooms should also be avoided.

Grapes, raisins, peaches, persimmons and plums are out for dogs, since these can cause things like bloating, kidney failure and other ailments. But it should be safe to toss your dog a cranberry or give him a taste of the sauce, as long as you’ve gone easy on the sugar. Corn on the cob must be kept away from your pet. Dogs will eat the cobs which can cause intestinal blockages and can be fatal.

Desserts and Spices

Two of the most dangerous foods for dogs may be at your Thanksgiving table–chocolate (cocoa) and nutmeg. Never give these to your dog under any circumstances. If you’ve put nutmeg in the pumpkin pie, then give your pet a taste of the plain canned pumpkin instead. Also avoid any kind of tree nuts, as well as macadamia nuts. No pecan pie for your dog, or you risk a trip to the vet, or worse.
And don’t let your own full stomach cause you to put off grabbing your dog’s leash and heading for a walk after dinner. You’ll both feel better and digest better after a little exercise.