Thanksgiving Food Guide for Your Pets

 In Pet Care

The holidays are quickly approaching, which brings seasonal celebrations with food, friends, and family. Your four-legged family member may be around during your holiday parties, so it is essential to know what goes under the table to them. Here is our Thanksgiving food guide for pets, so you know what foods will and will not keep them happy and healthy this holiday season.


There are healthy options that your pet can benefit from eating at your Thanksgiving feast. Here are three foods that you can share with your dogs and cats that are safe for consumption.

1. Turkey

Turkey is a lean source of protein for any cats or dogs. If you are going to feed your pet turkey, make sure to remove the skin, fat, bones, and any seasoning. Your animal can digest plain all-white turkey meat that will make their tummies feel full and keep them healthy. Any seasoning, skin, fat, and bones can harm your pet’s stomach. So if you are going to share your feast, make sure it is plain and simple!

2. Pumpkin

Pumpkins are an excellent food to feed your animal that provides them with three core benefits. According to iCalmPet, pumpkin can help your pet’s digestive health, urinary health, and even weight loss. Pumpkin is an excellent source of fiber that is also high in antioxidants and essential fatty acids. These elements are great for overall healthy skin and fur, and can help your furry friends shed a few pounds. You can feed your pets raw or cooked plain pumpkin, but make sure to leave out the sugar and other ingredients!

3. Mac and Cheese

Who doesn’t love a good bowl of mac and cheese with their Thanksgiving dinner? If you know your cat or dog can handle dairy, then mac and cheese is a safe leftover to share. If you are unsure about their dairy tolerance, try giving them plain macaroni. Sometimes cats develop lactose intolerance in their adult years, so make sure to be on the lookout before you share your cheesy leftovers.


Although there are healthy foods you can share with your furry family members, it is essential to know what foods will harm them. Be sure to keep an eye out for these three foods and that they don’t end up on the floor.

1. Chocolate

Most people know that chocolate is a dangerous food to feed your pets, but if you didn’t know, chocolate can be toxic. Any food, dessert, or caffeinated drink should not be shared with animals. According to Hills, a small amount of chocolate can lead to upset stomachs and diarrhea that will leave your pet in pain. A large amount of chocolate can ultimately lead to muscle tremors, seizures, heart attacks, or internal bleeding. It is better to be safe than sorry when it comes to this sweet treat.

2. Alcohol

Alcohol is a massive no for any animal. People may think it is humorous to let their pet take a sip of their drink, but even a small amount of alcohol can be toxic for animals. No matter the size or type of pet you have, it is not safe for them to ingest alcohol, and this also includes baked items. Stray away from sharing drinks or food items that were cooked with alcohol to keep your furry friend safe.

3. Xylitol

If you are unaware of what Xylitol is, it is a healthier take on artificial sweeteners for humans. If you decide to swap out your sugar for a sugar-free sweetener while cooking this holiday, don’t share those items with your pets. Xylitol can be healthier for humans, but it is poisonous to animals, and even deadly to dogs.

Thanksgiving allows people to celebrate what they are thankful for with the friends and family they share their lives with. Pets are an essential figure in a family, so make sure you feed them right this holiday season. If you are interested in learning more information on what foods are helpful or harmful to your pet, visit Andes-Straley Veterinary for more details. At Andes-Straley, we strive to provide our patients and owners top of the line pet health care. It is our goal to educate and involve clients in developing an individualized preventative health care plan that best serves your companion. If you are interested in making an appointment this holiday season, or learning more about your pet, visit us online here or call us at (423) 378-4443 today!