A dog with a turkey toy in its mouth while outside.

Can Dogs Eat Turkey?

Whether it’s Thanksgiving, Christmas, or an everyday occasion, many people enjoy turkey meat. Dogs like turkey too though, but can dogs eat turkey meat?

When prepared for your dog, without any extras, turkey meat is a lovely protein that will benefit your dog. In short, dogs can eat turkey as long as you remove the bones, don’t add any seasonings or other ingredients, and cook it.

Is It Safe For Dogs To Eat Turkey?

A dog laying down in the grass next to its turkey toy.
The turkey seems a little worried here.

It pretty much depends on how you prepare the meat. This meat protein is not toxic for your four-legged friend, and it is actually used in many dry and wet food brands as a protein.

But whenever we are preparing the turkey for ourselves, that means we will use lots of herbs, salt, pepper, and stuffing, which could potentially be harmful to your dog. If you are willing to cook the meat specially for the dog, without any seasoning, then trust me, your dog will think you are amazing! 

How Can I Give Turkey Meat To My Dog?

Here are some tips on how to give this delicious treat to your dog.

Remove The Bones 

Chicken and turkey bones, when cooked, become brittle. They are also small, and they can splinter easily into smaller pieces that could potentially cause damage to your dog’s stomach and intestines. This is why it is important for the owner to remove all bones from the meat before giving it to their pet.

Hold The Seasoning And Other Ingredients

Trust me. Your dog will not complain if you just give it the turkey as it is. Seasoning and such as salt and pepper, even butter, could cause tummy issues. Also, garlic and onion are toxic for dogs, which means that if you give them, you may end up with a sick doggo rather than a happy one.

Cook The Turkey And Avoid Giving It Raw 

Dogs won’t have trouble with raw food if it’s the right food and it’s prepared properly, but raw turkey may mean it will contain salmonella. This is why we recommend for the turkey meat to be nicely cooked before being served to the dog.

Why Is Turkey Good For Your Dog?

Turkey meat is a lovely protein that can be a part of a balanced meal that is specially prepared for your dog. That means no fat, no seasons, and no bones. It can also be a very good treat when your dog has behaved just the way you would like them to!

Another reason why turkey is good for your dog when given moderately is that it is rich in important minerals and vitamins, such as vitamins B12 and B6, niacin, selenium, zinc, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, and chlorine.

But in some cases, a dog may show signs of a food allergy. If you notice symptoms like itchy skin, redness, and skin rashes, as well as vomiting after feeding your dog turkey, then you should stop giving it and consult your vet about the symptoms. 

Conclusion: Can Dogs Eat Turkey?

So, can dogs eat turkey? Absolutely, but we encourage you to follow our guidelines about feeding your dog. To summarize: yes to cooked turkey when it is not seasoned, has no extra ingredients, and no bones. This way, there is no reason why your furry friend can’t enjoy special occasions with everyone else.

So, do you plan on giving your dog turkey? Let us know in the comments below!

Dr. Nade Georgieva
Dr. Nade Georgieva
Dr. Nade Georgieva, DVM, PG Dipp (Anesthesia and Analgesia) Nade is a young veterinarian from North Macedonia, with five years of experience in small animal clinical practice. She graduated from the Veterinary Faculty in Skopje, after which she got employed in her hometown. She has shown great interest in the field of pain management and anesthesia, and was the first vet in the country to continue education in the field. In 2021 she graduated with Distinction at the Royal Dick School of Veterinary Studies at the University of Edinburgh, obtaining the title Postgraduate Diploma-Anesthesia and Analgesia. Nade is owned by a year old black Labrador retriever named Fred and she loves spending her time outdoors with her dog and friends. In her spare time, she also loves to learn to play the guitar and take photos of nature and animals.