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Is Turkey Safe to Feed Your Dog?

{Excerpted from the American Kennel Club article AKC.org}


Although plain turkey is not toxic to dogs and is a common ingredient in commercial dog foods due to its richness in protein, riboflavin, and phosphorous it can become a recipe for an uncomfortable digestive upset at best, and pancreatitis at worst for our dogs when we dress our turkeys with butter, salt, pepper, herbs, and spices.

How to safely feed your dog Turkey:

  • Eliminate the skin since that’s where all the seasonings are that can irritate your dog's stomach, plus the fat content can cause pancreatitis.

  • Feed only the turkey meat because onions are toxic to dogs and large amounts of garlic can be toxic, too.

  • Serve only small quantities and ask your vet if it’s okay to give your dog table scraps especially if your dog has preexisting health conditions (like diabetes)

  • Ensure there are NO bones in the meat you feed your dog

Are Turkey bones safe for dogs?

DANGER! Owning to their brittle nature and small size all poultry bones are NOT safe to feed your dog. They can cause the following problems:

  • mouth and tongue injuries

  • throat or intestinal tract obstruction

  • choking

  • stomach and intestinal lining can be pierced by bone fragments

  • constipation

  • rectal bleeding due to sharp bone fragments

  • can result in emergency surgery due to blockages

Many vets feel the risks of giving your dog a bone far outweigh the benefits (nutritious, dental plaque buildup prevention, a distraction from excessive scratching, and paw licking).


Guidelines for Safely Feeding Your Dog a Bone.

DON’Ts:

  • Don’t give the wrong kind of bones including poetry bones and pork bones

  • Don’t give cooked bones of any kind

  • Don’t allow the dog to chew any kind of bone into small pieces

  • Don’t give chunks of bone that can cause blockages

  • Don’t give your dog a bone if he/she has stomach problems


DO:

  • Offer raw meat bones (even many vets agree raw meat bones are best)

  • Give the bone after your dog’s meal; he’ll chew slower

  • Take bone away after 10-to-15 minutes; put it in refrigerator

  • Dispose of bone after 3-4 days

  • Give bones that are larger than the length of the dog’s muzzle so they don’t swallow them whole

  • Always supervise when giving a bone; check periodically and remove it it it’s breaking apart or getting too small

  • Educate yourself by referring to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) who publishes information on commercially sold dog treats.

*NOTE:

PLEASE…talk to your vet about your individual dog and whether feeding him/her bones is in their best interests.