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What Christmas Food Can Dogs Eat?

Christmas brings the best food, from ham to turkey to pie. Dogs and cats are part of our family, and they are probably circling the table expectantly. But unless you want to spend Christmas at the emergency veterinarian, be careful about which foods you share with our dog or cat.

There are many Christmas foods that can cause gastric distress (or worse) in our pets.

Since it’s the holiday season, you might also be interested in this Charlotte gift guide for pets!

Brown dog with santa hat sitting at table with a bone wrapped in a bow
Photo: Depositphotos

Make sure that everyone at your gathering knows to not give your pets table scraps without clearing it with you. In case of emergency, the Pet Poison Helpline number is 855-764-7661. And the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center can be reached at 888-426-4435.

And keep this list of Charlotte veterinarians on hand too. Some are emergency vets, who can see your animal at a moment’s notice, even on a holiday.

What Christmas food can dogs eat?

Dogs can safely eat some Christmas food, in small quantities, but the key is to keep it plain. That means to avoid food with spices, bitter, onions and garlic.

If you want to really be a rock star, separate some of the potatoes, sweet potatoes, and peas out before you add any other ingredients, and cook them up special (i.e. plain) for your dog.

Read labels. Avoid anything with xylitol, which is toxic to dogs and cats. Do not give your dog turkey with bones or skin.

Anything made with yeast dough can cause painful gas and bloating in your pet.

Keep any treats from the “good list” in very small quantities. Even if they’re generally safe for your pets, they might high in calories and fat, and any food they’re not used to can make them feel sick.

Also, it’s best to consult your trusted veterinarian with questions about your dog’s diet. The following information is generally accepted as a guideline, but your pet’s needs might vary.

Here is what is safe and not safe for dogs to eat on Christmas:

Christmas food dogs can eat

  • Turkey meat (without skin or bones)
  • Ham (unseasoned, boneless)
  • Carrots
  • Green beans
  • Sweet potatoes (cooked, plain)
  • Plain potatoes
  • Plain pumpkin (cooked)
  • Plain peas
  • Squash (baked), with no skin, seeds or strings

Christmas food dogs can not safely eat

  • Turkey bones and skin
  • Stuffing
  • Gravy
  • Mashed potatoes (because of what’s added to it)
  • Pumpkin pie
  • Anything chocolate
  • Anything with alcohol
  • Anything with raisins or grapes, which are poison to dogs
  • Onions
  • Scallions
  • Garlic
  • Candy
  • Anything with xylitol
  • Gingerbread
  • Peppermint
  • Eggnog
  • Macadamia nuts

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