What Thanksgiving food can dogs eat?

CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (WBOY) — A recent holiday survey by Veterinarians.org said that West Virginia has some of the most overweight pets—an average of 15.66 pounds overweight.

While West Virginia adores its “big brown watermelon” mascot, Gov. Jim Justice’s Bulldog, Babydog, it’s important to think of the health of your pet before you give them any table scraps. According to the study, West Virginia has the highest rate of overweight female pets in the country at 21.4 pounds overweight, and the breed that is most likely to be overweight is, surprise, Bulldogs.

Babydog eats cake off Gov. Justice’s plate at an event in 2021

If you want to give your pet a treat on Thanksgiving, there are some foods that are safe to enjoy, but make sure to avoid food straight from your plate that can cause weight gain and other health problems.

Anything seasoned, fatty or sugary should never be fed to your dog or cat, according to the American Kennel Club.

Foods that you can feed your dog:

  • Plain sweet potato
  • Plain potato
  • Apples
  • Turkey meat (no bones or skins)
  • Plain green beans
  • Plain peas
  • Pumpkin
  • Squash

Foods that you can feed your cat:

  • Plain potato
  • Apples
  • Plain green beans
  • Bananas
  • Broccoli
  • Pumpkin
  • Squash
  • Turkey meat (no bones or skins)

For all of these foods, make sure they are plain and unseasoned with no added fat or butter of any kind. If using canned foods, make sure that it is not pre-seasoned or pre-spiced. In addition to seasoned foods, here is a list of specific foods you should not feed your pets.

  • Turkey bones, skin, and gravy
  • Stuffing
  • Casseroles
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Creamed peas
  • Chocolate and sweets

On top of making sure your pet’s diet is safe, also make sure to properly secure trash so that animals don’t accidentally eat something that’s toxic to them. Thanksgiving coincides with an uptick in emergency vet visits across the U.S., according to the AKC. If you do have a food emergency, you can call the Pet Poison Helpline here.

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