Dog-Friendly Thanksgiving Foods for Fido to Gobble Gobble

Posted by Jessica Roberts

This article was updated in November 2021.

Every Thanksgiving, we put on our stretchiest pants and bring the family together for a feast like no other. Unfortunately, many traditional Thanksgiving dishes include ingredients that can be downright dangerous for dogs. If you want your pup to participate in the holiday meal, these 8 dog-friendly Thanksgiving foods are sure to fill his belly and his heart.

1. An Apple-icious Treat

"I find this rather a-peeling." Photo by @nutmegandhennessy

Apple pie is as American as, well, apple pie. But many store-bought pies contain Xylitol, which is toxic to dogs, and even homemade pies typically contain far too much sugar for a canine’s digestive system. Fortunately, Fido won't have to miss out on this delicious staple thanks to Bocce's Bakery Fireside Apple Pie Treats.

2. Gobble 'Til He Wobbles

"Quick, look over there!" Photo by flickr.com/mccun934

We can’t go any further on this list without talking about the star of the Thanksgiving table: the bird. Whether you stuff it, baste it, spatchcock it or fry it, turkey is the undeniable showstopper of the Thanksgiving meal. While a few bits from your plate - without any skin or bones - is perfectly fine to slip to your pup under the table, he might prefer a whole feast all to himself.

Treat your diminutive dog to this Tiny Thanksgiving Day Dinner, or give your big bud a seasonal feast with American Journey Chicken and Turkey, a delicious grain-free dinner packed full of nutrients.

3. Give Peas a Chance

"But where'd the turkey go?" Photo by BringFido/Jessica Roberts

Peas and green beans are high in Vitamins A, B, C, and K, essential nutrients like folate, thiamin, and manganese, and a good source of dietary fiber. The sweet taste also makes them a perfect Thanksgiving side dish that many dogs adore. If your meal includes a green bean casserole or creamed peas, you can set some plain, cooked legumes aside for your pup to enjoy. Just be sure to stick to fresh or frozen and avoid canned ones with added sodium.

4. It's All Gravy, Baby

Waiting's not easy. Photo by @stephandthespaniels

Many of our favorite Thanksgiving dishes for humans have a high fat content, and gravy is no exception. Fatty ingredients in a traditional gravy like butter, turkey drippings, onion and bacon can cause gastrointestinal distress in your dog. But that doesn’t mean you can’t whip up a perfectly savory and rich gravy just for Fido. Heat a cup of bone broth in a saucepan and whisk in a tablespoon of garbanzo bean flour or potato flakes. Slowly cook on low heat until the concoction thickens into gravy. Be sure to let it cool before serving it atop your pup’s meal, as he won’t be able to stop himself from scarfing it right down.

5. Sweet 'Taters

"I yam hungry after all." Photo by @hellorubydoodle

Whether you love them or hate them, sweet potatoes are certainly a divisive tuber, and serving them up to your canine is also a bit controversial. Uncooked sweet potato or potato skins are a definitive no, as they can cause a blockage. But boiled, steamed or baked, peeled, unseasoned and served in moderation, yams and potatoes are a perfectly reasonable delicacy to dish up to your doggy. If you have enough cooking to do on the big holiday, your sweetie can still get the spud she craves with these Wholesome Pride Sweet Potato treats.

6. No Bones About It

"Why human, why?" Photo by @kingbentleythebulldog

Every pet owner knows poultry bones are a no go, but just because you can’t give Fido that drumstick, it doesn’t mean he can’t gnaw away during the holiday. This Busy Bone is a safe option for your pooch to satisfy his meaty cravings. And while turkey bones are off limits, you can get him these chewy and tasty turkey tendon dog treats to enjoy. You can also use the turkey bones left over from your meal to make a simple broth, which can be spooned over your pup's food for a flavorful addition to his regular diet.

7. A Gourd Healthy Meal

"Which part of this am I supposed to eat?" Photo by Pexel/Nataliya Vaitkevich

Pumpkin and butternut squash are pet-friendly Thanksgiving ingredients that truly deliver on flavor and nutrition. Both are excellent for a dog's digestive system and promote a shiny, healthy skin and coat. And just as important, most pups absolutely love the taste. Serve up the gourds roasted, steamed, or pureed and, as always, unseasoned for your pooch. They can also be mixed with oats, egg and yogurt and baked into "pup-kin muffins." If you're serving Fido pumpkin straight from the can, be sure to use only pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling, which can contain nutmeg.

8. Dessert Goes to the Dogs

Dessert: the real reason for the season. Photo by @thedogbakery

Fido does not need to miss out on the pièce de résistance of the Thanksgiving meal: the desserts. Dog bakeries across the country have filled their pastry cases with drool-inducing pet-friendly confections. Simply visit the BringFido Pet Services page to find a bakery near you!

After you’ve stuffed your little turkey, work off the calories together on a pet-friendly turkey trot.

What is your dog's favorite Thanksgiving treat? Leave a comment or tweet us @BringFido!

BringFido is committed to providing authentic dog-friendly content that our readers will love. We may at times receive compensation from our partners or use affiliate links to promote products and services featured on our blog. Banner photo by Pexel/Nataliya Vaitkevich.