What foods dogs can & cannot eat this holiday season

With Thanksgiving and Christmas not far around the corner – it’s time to amp up the food offerings and indulge! While it might seem like a good idea to also treat your dog to some of your favorite holiday season foods, be careful. Some foods can cause serious upset to the health of your pup, so take caution by reading below the foods that your dog can and cannot eat. 


What foods your dog can eat

Despite popular belief, dogs are actually omnivores, meaning that they do well on both meat and plant-based food groups. While the following foods are fairly safe to feed your dog, we would advise against overfeeding. For more information on the ideal diet for your dog, check out our blog on the best food to feed your dog


  1. Pumpkin

First on the list as an obvious food for the holiday season, pumpkin! This particular winter squash keeps the GI tract healthy and happy with a rich blend of soluble and insoluble fibers. It also helps with inflammation, urinary tract health, digestive upset, and skin and coat health.

Feeding tip: dogs can eat pumpkin flesh and seeds, just be sure to remove the skin before feeding them.

  1. Sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes contain beta-carotene, vitamins A and C, potassium, fiber, and many other much-needed nutrients. They help promote healthy skin, coat, nerves, and muscles.

Feeding tip: Make sure the sweet potato is cooked and the skin is removed. Skins can be hard for your dog to digest – so be sure to remove them.

  1. Apples

Apples are full of vitamins A and C and contain lots of great fiber which can help with your dog’s digestion. Aside from this, apples are a great way to clean your pup’s teeth and freshen breath! Perfect timing, especially if they’ll be giving a lot of kisses out this holiday season!

Feeding tip: Best to remove the seeds as a large amount can be toxic.


  1. Turkey Meat (no bones, skin, or fat)

Your dog’s ultimate dream dish if it’s just the meat itself! Turkey bones can splinter, causing intestinal obstruction or internal bleeding. The turkey’s skin is usually prepared with added seasoning & ingredients, which can cause gastrointestinal upset. Lastly, fatty meat can lead to pancreatitis in dogs. So remember, when giving turkey to your dog, just give them the meat.

  1. Green Beans

Green beans contain plenty of plant fiber, manganese, and vitamins C and K, all of which are good for dogs.

Feeding tip: dogs can eat green beans raw, cooked, or steamed. Just ensure they are plain without any additional seasonings or other ingredients. 

  1. Carrots

Carrots are full of beta-carotene, vitamins, and fiber. They are also high in antioxidants, which are beneficial for pets with cancer. Some vets even recommend frozen carrots for teething puppies!

Feeding tip: dogs can eat carrots raw or cooked, just cut them into smaller pieces to prevent choking (especially in small dogs).


What foods your dog can’t eat

Most of the foods below are dangerous for your dog to eat. So make sure to watch the kitchen and dining table in case they leap up and eat any of these items. If you realize they’ve eaten any of these foods, get in contact with your vet as soon as possible. 


  1. Garlic, Onions, Scallions & Chives 

Part of the allium family, these are highly toxic to dogs and can cause elevated heart rate, anemia, and general weakness. They can also damage the red blood cells and cause gastrointestinal upset, breathlessness, diarrhea, and vomiting.

  1. Baked Goods & Artificial Sweeteners

Xylitol can be found in some baked goods, especially in diabetic and keto recipes. If a dog eats them, it can result in low blood sugar and could cause liver failure. It is highly toxic and can even be fatal for dogs.

  1. Raisins and grapes

Even small amounts of raisins or grapes can cause major health concerns such as vomiting, diarrhea, and severe gastrointestinal upset to kidney failure.

  1. Chocolate

Chocolate is a well-known toxin to most dog owners. It can cause several health issues within a dog, including overstimulation of their heart and slowing down their metabolic process resulting in diarrhea, vomiting, and seizures. While no chocolate is good for your dog to eat, the variety to be extremely mindful of is darker chocolate as these contain higher concentrations of cocoa.

  1. Macadamia Nuts

Macadamia nuts cause severe reactions within dogs such as muscular weakness, disorientation, depression, tremors, and abdominal pain.

  1. Raw Yeast Dough

Dough causes various symptoms such as vomiting, disorientation, and abdominal pain in pets. Also, it can ferment, producing alcohol and possible ethanol poisoning.

The holiday season can be a fun and exciting time, but make sure to be mindful of these foods around your dog. Aside from indulging, take some pictures with your dog, maybe even treat them to daycare. Most importantly, be sure to share this article with all your fellow pet parents in preparation for Thanksgiving and Christmas!