Pumpkin spice lattes, food comas, Mariah Carey, and the festive feelings at Friendsgiving, there are so many reasons we love the Thanksgiving season. And, it’s not just us. Dogs love Thanksgiving too.
The extra snuggles, the food that accidentally made its way to the floor, and the moment when they sneak a piece of pie from the table, many pets partake in the Thanksgiving feast. But, you and your pup may want to walk with caution.
Ahead, find five tasty Thanksgiving treats to pamper your pet this holiday season. (Spoiler alert: These dogs get way more delicious food than us two-legged folk.)
3 Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Dog this Thanksgiving
Before we dig into our favorite treats, let’s discuss some of the important foods your dog should never eat.
Here are the foods that pets need to avoid:
Anything with alliums (like onions or scallions) can be dangerous for your dog when eaten in large quantities. You’ll want to look out for anything with hidden ingredients because it can be easy to forget about onions in a dish.
2. Grapes and Raisins
Grapes (and subsequently raisins) have been known to cause kidney failure in dogs. So look out for that fruit salad or raisin pudding and opt for a dog-friendly alternative, like cranberries.
3. Xylitol and Chocolate
You always have to be careful with desserts. Everyone knows to avoid feeding chocolate to dogs, but that doesn’t mean all non-chocolate desserts are safe. Xylitol has become a standard sugar replacement, and while it might be better for humans, it’s poisonous to dogs. With all your relatives offering to bring a dessert, it might be hard to keep track of what’s sweetening that pie or cake. Play it safe and only give your pet the desserts you make.
While there are some foods you’ll undoubtedly want to avoid, much of the Thanksgiving meal is right for your dog. Your pet will surely appreciate a slice of turkey as long as you take out any bones. Likewise, pasta, green beans, and mashed potatoes are perfect pet foods. Cranberry sauce is another one your pet will enjoy, with all that sugar, you might want to keep it to a minimum.
5 Favorite Homemade Thanksgiving Treats for Dogs
While there are lots for your dog to eat on your Thanksgiving table, you might want to make a special doggie meal just for your furry friend. Whether you’re having a hard time remembering which foods are safe, or you want to make your pooch feel special with a custom-made meal, here are some fantastic Thanksgiving treats your pup will love.
These are easy to make, and with your Thanksgiving meal prep in the works, you’ll have the ingredients handy for these festive foods.
1. Apple, Cheddar, and Bacon Dog Treats
We love these treats from The Cottage Market and know that your dog will go crazy for them too. These sweet and savory biscuits are a perfect snack for the holidays, but your dog will probably appreciate them any time of the year.
- 1 1/2 cups of white flour
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons of softened butter
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 8 ounces of grated sharp cheddar
- 1 large apple peeled and grated
- 2 tablespoons of dried parsley
- 3 tablespoons of bacon bits
- 1 cup of milk
2. Thanksgiving Meatballs
Dogs love meatballs, but this Thanksgiving twist on a classic will get your pet extra excited. Check out Gone to the Snow Dogs’ recipe for these turkey and cranberry morsels- your dog will thank you.
- 1 pound of ground turkey
- 1/2 cup of chopped cranberries
- 1 cup of green beans (drained)
- 1 cup of breadcrumbs
3. Turkey Treats
Dog Vills’ turkey creations are a perfect twist on the classic. It’s tastier than a simple cut of turkey but will make your dog feel like one of the family.
- 2 cups cooked and cut up turkey
- 4 teaspoons grated parmesan cheese
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups whole-wheat flour
- 2 tablespoons brewer’s yeast
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4. Pumpkin Sweet Potato Bites
Nothing says Thanksgiving quite like pumpkin pie, but when you add sweet potatoes, it’s Thanksgiving perfection your pet will love. These healthy treats from Proud Dog Mom make for the perfect dessert or snack for your dog.
- 1½ cups brown rice flour
- 1 cup mashed sweet potato
- ½ cup 100% pure pumpkin purée
- ½ cup water
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons 100% pure organic maple syrup
5. Frozen Turkey Bites
There are always leftovers after Thanksgiving. Most people end up with turkey sandwiches for the next week, but 17 Apart’s turkey bites are a creative alternative your dog will love. While it might be too cold to appreciate this frozen snack in New York right now, these turkey dinner cubes could be a refreshing snack after a long walk.
- Turkey Broth
- Sweet Potato, Softened and chunked
- An ice tray
Have a Healthy & Happy Pet-Friendly Thanksgiving
With so many creative foods for your pup this Thanksgiving, your biggest trouble of the holiday might be deciding where to start. No matter what you’re feeding your dog this Thanksgiving, from turkey bites to pumpkin sweet potato desserts, your pup is sure to love spending the holiday with you, and that’s certainly something to be thankful for.