Dishing Up Safe Thanksgiving Foods for Your Dog

In this blog, Arden will go over foods to feed and avoid with your dog this Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving is approaching, which may motivate your dog to shadow you in the kitchen. The sight and smell of special yummies can make any canine drool with delight. My dogs, Kona and Emma, love being taste testers in my kitchen. 

Our dogs deserve to celebrate this feast-filled holiday with us safely and not eat something that will warrant spending Thanksgiving at an emergency veterinary clinic. Here is a quick rundown of no-no holiday foods that could cause upset stomach, vomiting, diarrhea or worse, painful pancreatitis in your chowhound:

  • Seasoned turkey meat, skin and bones. Bones can splinter and cause a dog to choke or suffer punctures to his digestive tract.
  • Pumpkin pie. A slice is loaded with sugar that can cause digestive upset in dogs. 
  • Any food with onions, chives, leeks or scallions. These foods can weaken a dog’s red blood cells, damage his mucous membranes and cause anemia. 
  • Gravy and stuffing. These holiday food staples are loaded with high levels of fat and salt that are not tolerated in dogs. 

Grr-eat news! Your dog can enjoy a safe feast and celebrate this holiday. Healthy choices include:

  • White turkey meat rinsed thoroughly of all seasonings
  • Mashed potatoes served plain
  • Steamed green beans minus any seasoning
  • Canned pumpkin. A spoonful can provide a healthy boost to a dog’s digestive system. 

If you have the time and motivation, here is my Fido Thanksgiving Feast recipe I created in my best-selling book called, Real Food for Dogs available on Amazon.com: 


1 teaspoon olive oil
½ cup plain mashed potatoes
1 egg
½ cup diced cooked turkey meat (rinsed)
½ cup chopped broccoli
1/3 cup grated cheddar cheese

  1. Warm the olive oil in a medium-sized pan over medium heat on the stove.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the potatoes and egg.
  3. Pour the potato and egg mix into the pan. Add the turkey and broccoli.
  4. Cover the pan, reduce the heat to low, and simmer until the egg is cooked.
  5. Top with grated cheese and let it cook for a few more minutes to allow the cheese to melt.
  6. Let the dish cool before serving to your grateful dog.  Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. 

To occupy your dog as you prepare the feast for two-legged guest, you can grab your dog’s Kong toy or West Paws Toppl and stuff either with my recipe. Bone appetit!

— Arden Moore is the founder of Pet First Aid 4U, best-selling author of host of the Oh Behave Show on Pet Life Radiowww.ardenmoore.com.