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Can dogs eat turkey

Can Dogs Eat Turkey?

Turkey is a popular meat choice for many people, especially during festive occasions like Thanksgiving and Christmas. As a dog owner, you may be wondering whether it is safe to share this delicious treat with your furry friend. Well, the answer is both yes and no. While plain, cooked turkey can be a healthy addition to your dog’s diet, there are certain precautions you need to take to ensure their well-being.

Benefits of Turkey for Dogs

Turkey, when prepared and given in the right way, can offer some health benefits to your canine companion. Here are a few reasons why turkey can be a good addition to your dog’s diet:

  1. Lean Protein: Turkey is a lean meat that is rich in high-quality protein. Protein is essential for dogs as it helps build and repair tissues, supports a healthy immune system, and provides energy.
  2. Nutrient Content: Turkey is a good source of essential nutrients such as iron, zinc, phosphorus, potassium, and B vitamins. These nutrients are important for maintaining your dog’s overall health and well-being.
  3. Low in Fat: When served without the skin, turkey is a relatively low-fat meat option. This can be beneficial for dogs that are on a low-fat diet or need to maintain a healthy weight.

Potential Risks and Precautions

Although turkey can be beneficial for dogs, there are certain risks and precautions you should be aware of before sharing this meat with your furry friend:

  1. Bones: Never feed your dog turkey bones, especially cooked bones. Cooked bones can splinter and pose a choking hazard or cause internal injuries. Ensure that all meat you offer to your dog is boneless.
  2. Seasonings: Avoid feeding your dog any turkey that has been seasoned with spices, herbs, onions, garlic, or other flavorings. These ingredients can be harmful to dogs and may cause digestive upset or even toxicity.
  3. Skin and Fat: While turkey skin and fat may be tasty to humans, they can cause digestive issues and even pancreatitis in dogs. It is best to remove the skin and excess fat before giving turkey to your dog.
  4. Portion Control: Moderation is key when it comes to feeding your dog turkey. Too much turkey can lead to an upset stomach, diarrhea, or even pancreatitis. Remember to adjust your dog’s regular food portion to account for the additional calories from the turkey.

Safe Ways to Serve Turkey to Dogs

Now that you are aware of the risks and precautions, here are some safe ways to serve turkey to your dog:

  1. Plain, Cooked Turkey: Give your dog small, boneless pieces of plain, cooked turkey. Ensure that it is thoroughly cooked, without any seasonings, skin, or fat. Avoid using any type of seasoning, including salt.
  2. Homemade Turkey Treats: If you enjoy baking, you can make homemade turkey treats for your dog. There are numerous dog-friendly recipes available that use turkey as the main ingredient. Just remember to follow the recipe closely and avoid any harmful additives.
  3. Turkey Broth: Instead of feeding solid turkey, you can offer your dog some homemade turkey broth. Cook the turkey in water and strain the liquid to make a flavorful broth. Freeze it in ice cube trays for convenient serving and use it as a tasty addition to your dog’s regular meals.
  4. Commercial Dog Food: Many commercial dog foods include turkey as an ingredient. If you prefer the convenience of commercial dog food, look for high-quality options that use real turkey meat and do not contain any harmful additives.


In conclusion, dogs can eat turkey as long as it is prepared and served in a safe manner. Plain, cooked turkey without any seasoning, skin, or bones can provide your dog with lean protein and essential nutrients. However, it is crucial to take precautions, such as avoiding bones, seasonings, and excess fat, to ensure your dog’s well-being. Remember to practice moderation and consult your veterinarian if you have any concerns about adding turkey to your dog’s diet. By following these guidelines, you can safely share the joy of turkey with your furry friend during special occasions.


Q: Is turkey safe for dogs to eat?

A: Yes, plain, cooked turkey can be a healthy addition to a dog’s diet.

Q: What are the benefits of turkey for dogs?

A: Turkey provides lean protein, essential nutrients, and is low in fat, which can benefit a dog’s overall health and well-being.

Q: What precautions should I take when feeding my dog turkey?

A: Avoid giving your dog turkey bones, seasoned turkey, turkey skin, and excess fat. These can pose risks such as choking, digestive issues, and pancreatitis.

Q: How much turkey can I feed my dog?

A: It is important to practice portion control. Too much turkey can cause stomach upset, diarrhea, or pancreatitis. Adjust your dog’s regular food portion to account for the additional calories from the turkey.


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Lawrence Pryor
Lawrence Pryor
Hi everyone, I am a dog lover/owner and a blogger for many years and I created this website to share fun and interesting stories about our wonderful dogs. They truly are our best friends.


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