Should You Share Your Turkey With Your Dog?

November 23, 2020 5 min read

Can dogs have turkey

Thanksgiving isn’t nicknamed “Turkey Day” for no reason- the deliciously seasoned meat is the centerpiece of88% of American households. With Thanksgiving approaching fast, you may be wondering if it’s safe to share some of your favorite holiday cuisines with your pet. 

Your dog will want to engage in the festivities! As he stares at your plate, you may feel tempted to feed them a sliver of delicious turkey- however, there are a few things you should know before you feed turkey to your canine.

Can Dogs Eat Turkey?

The simple answer is yes! 

Dogs absolutely love the taste of turkey, and it’s rich in nutrients like protein and riboflavin. It’s also highly digestible and great for dogs’ immune systems making this festive bird the perfect healthy treat for your dog.However, there are a few conditions that may alter the benefits of turkey for dogs.

Whether or not your dog can eat turkey depends on the condition of the bird. If your turkey has already been cooked and seasoned, you want to be very careful when you feed it to your furry friend.Many of the spices we commonly put on our Thanksgiving turkeys (like black pepper, onions, andgarlic) are toxic for dogs. 

Feeding your dog a piece of seasoned turkey meat may irritate their stomachs, cause diarrhea and vomiting, or cause sodium poisoning. So, it’s best to avoid feeding your dog seasoned turkey all together. 

If you want to include your dog in the turkey festivities, set aside unseasoned boiled turkey, dried turkey treats, or better yet,feed them a raw turkey meal!

We recommend that you avoid feeding your dog turkey skin. The skin on the turkey usually has the highest amount of sodium and fat, and could cause some serious health issues for your pet.

Should You Feed Raw Turkey Or Cooked?

A lot of dog owners are worried to feed their pups raw meat because of the misconception that raw meats are dangerous. However, many people fail to realize that a dog’s digestive system is far different than our own.

Dogs are biologically designed to be resistant to raw food-borne bacteria.Common pathogens like Salmonella or E. Coli simply cannot survive in the short, acidic digestive tract present in a dog’s body.Therefore, raw turkey is perfectly safe!

Difference Between Raw and Cooked Turkey

Now knowing that raw turkey is just as safe as cooked turkey. What’s the difference? 

The heat applied to cook turkey destroys a lot of minerals and nutrients that are beneficial for your dog’s health. Nutrients like Vitamin A and B get destroyed during the process. Therefore, feeding your dog raw turkey would be better than cooked. 

Benefits of Turkey For Your Dog

You may be wondering if it’s safe to feed some of the turkey extras to your dog while you’re preparing it and we’re happy to tell you that it is! Each part of the turkey has different benefits for your dog and you can feed most extras to your dog safely.

Turkey Necks

Turkey necks are not only perfectly safe for your dog to eat, but they’re also full of nutrients! There is a high amount of glucosamine and chondroitin present in turkey necks, making them beneficial for your pup’s joint health. Turkey necks also make a great chew for your dog providing them a great deal of mental stimulation and teeth cleaning.

Ground Turkey

Ground turkey is another delicious treat for your dog. A great way to feed your dog a healthy Thanksgiving meal is to make it yourself, and ground turkey is a great source of protein. A great idea for a Thanksgiving meal is cooking up ground turkey with some veggies. For a recipe on a delicious ground turkey dinner, clickhere!

Turkey Jerky

Another great way to feed your dog turkey is through turkey jerky. You can slip your pup a piece whenever you catch them exhibiting good behavior, or even if you feel like spoiling them!Only feed your dog turkey jerky made for canines. Human turkey jerky contains too much added sodium for your pet. 

Turkey Bacon

Regular bacon has a high fat content, so it’s not that great for your dog. However, if you love bacon and want your dog to have a taste, you can give them some turkey bacon! Turkey bacon is a lot healthier than traditional bacon because there’s of the boost in protein and promotes a healthy coat.If you do choose to feed your dog turkey bacon, be sure to grab a low-sodium pack.

Turkey Tail

Turkey Tail differs from the rest of the foodstuffs on this list- instead of being a part of the bird, turkey tail is a mushroom packed with health benefits. Turkey tail is used mostly as an immune-booster for dogs, but it has many more uses than that. The medical mushroom is also great for fighting cancer, reducing inflammation, and destroying viruses. Turkey tail isn’t necessarily the tastiest treat for your dog, but adding a small amount to their dinners will give them a boost in health and energy.

Can Dogs Eat Cooked Bones?

It’s never a good idea to feed your dog cooked bones because when bones heat up, their structure weakens making the bone susceptible to splintering. Cooked bones can also become trapped in your pup’s lower jaw or gut. 

If you want to feed your dog a bone, the best course of action would be to deliver the bone raw that properly fits their mouth. 

Raw bones are great for your dog’s dental hygiene, nutrition, and more. Some animal bones, like chicken bones and pork rib bones, could still splinter even if they are uncooked. For this reason, it’s best to feed your dog raw beef or lamb bones.

Read: Safe Bones For Your Dog 

Turkey For Dogs With a Sensitive Stomach

If your dog has a sensitive stomach, you may have experienced the bouts of diarrhea or vomiting after they eat something foreign or if you change up their diet. Luckily, due to its bland flavor and easy digestibility, turkey is fed commonly to dogs with upset stomachs. 

If your dog is experiencing nausea, you may want to try feeding them a bland turkey diet for a couple days until their symptoms subside. If your dog experiences nausea after being placed back on their regular diet, it may be time for a change. The best diet for a dog with a sensitive stomach is a raw diet. A raw diet is the most species-appropriate option for all dogs, and it has a long list ofbenefits

Turkey is a great starter meat for a raw diet, being one of the most lean and digestible meat options for your pet. At Cali Raw, we supply full nutrition in each pack of ourturkey formula- consisting of raw turkey organs, vegetables, and supplements. After switching your dog to a raw diet, their stomach will slowly start to feel better!