Holiday foods your dog can safely eat and ones to avoid

As we load up our plates for our holiday dinner, it might be tempting to sneak your dogs a snack from the table. 

It's easy to offer up the turkey or ham bones, but the American Kennel Club and American Veterinary Medical Association say to avoid that as they can potentially cause damage to your pet's digestive tract.

Many other foods aren't good for your pup either. 

"When it comes to the foods you shouldn't feed your dog, foods like ham, turkey skin, and gravy tend to be fatty, which can cause pancreatitis in dogs," Sarah Bank, American Kennel Club Communications Coordinator, says. "Chocolate and other sweet holiday desserts contain xylitol, which is toxic for dogs. While raisins and grapes don't contain xylitol, they happen to be toxic as well."

Bank also mentions not giving your dogs food that is heavy on seasonings.

Not to worry, there are healthier and safer choices to share with your dog.

From green beans to sweet potatoes, plenty of fall favorites can be good options for your dog to share in small portions during holiday festivities.

"Moderation is key. Be mindful of how much you're giving your pet. Even if it's healthy for them, too much can still cause stomach issues," says Bank.

Here is a list from Bank and the American Kennel Society on foods your dog can eat and some foods your pup should avoid. 


  • Turkey – Turkey meat is perfectly fine for dogs if you stick to the turkey meat that has not been prepared with any seasonings.
  • Potatoes – Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of dietary fiber and vitamins. Regular potatoes are fine to give your dog if they're boiled or baked with no added butter, sour cream, or seasonings. Serve in moderation.
  • Green Beans – Plain green beans are full of vitamins and fiber and are a safe treat for dogs if they're plain without any added seasonings or butter.
  • Apples – Apples are another great source of fiber and vitamins. However, make sure to remove the skin and core as the seeds can be toxic.
  • Pumpkin – Pumpkin is a fall favorite and is quite healthy for dogs. If you want to give some to your dog, make sure it's raw pumpkin without any spices or inside any baked goods. They may contain xylitol, which is toxic to dogs.


  • Turkey bones, skin, gravy
  • Stuffing
  • Chocolate and other desserts
  • Raisins & grapes
  • Ham
  • Onions & Garlic