Dog begging for Thanksgiving food

thanksgiving foods your pet can eat (and not eat)

Rejoice! Holiday meal season is upon us. It’s time to stuff our faces with copious amounts of turkey, casseroles, and carbs. While your pet might enjoy these yummy foods too, most are not appropriate for their diet. They can even be toxic.    

Human food is usually too salty, greasy, or sugary for our pets. If your pet does get into your holiday dinner, you could see some diarrhea, and if they start vomiting, plan to bring them to your vet to be checked for pancreatitis or other serious illness.   

Below are some common toxins to stay clear of this holiday season.    

Garlic, onions, leeks, and chives 

Let’s face it—garlic and onions make a lot of Thanksgiving dishes taste GREAT, but these yummies are big no-nos for both cats and dogs. Eating garlic, onions, leeks, or chives can cause gastrointestinal issues or anemia (abnormally low blood count). Many holiday dishes contain one or more of these ingredients, like turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, or green bean casserole, so before you or your guests drop a little treat for your pet, make sure everyone knows the consequences.   


While it might be tempting to throw your dog or cat a bone from the dinner table, please don’t. Small bones can cause choking hazards or other internal blockages, and cut bones can splinter and cause gastrointestinal damage.  


When people think of Thanksgiving desserts, they usually think of apple, pumpkin, or pecan pie, but that doesn’t mean sneaky ol’ chocolate doesn’t show up often. Chocolate contains theobromine and caffeine, which are both toxic for dogs and cats. Even the sugar in non-chocolate desserts is likely to cause diarrhea for your furball — and that’s not a great ending to an awesome holiday dinner.   


This goes without saying, but don’t let your pet drink from your holiday beer, big glass of wine, nightcap, and so on. Alcohol can cause your dog’s or cat’s blood sugar, blood pressure, and body temperature to drop.    

Other toxins to stay clear of:  

Sugarless candy  
Grapes and raisins  
Yeasted dough (raw bread or pastry dough)    

Happy (and safe) eating, friends!