The holiday season is in full swing in Westchester! And even though gatherings may be smaller this year, our pets will join in our family celebrations like always.

Many people buy their pets gifts and like to include them in the festivities. But when it comes to holiday foods and treats, it’s important to know what’s healthy and unhealthy for your dog to enjoy.

Take a look at the list below for a quick reference guide to safe and unsafe foods for the holidays, and all year round.



The Holiday Foods ‘Naughty List’

These typical holiday foods should never be fed to your dog:


  • Onions & Garlic — Both have a compound called thiosulphate. Thiosulphate is extremely toxic to dogs, so onions and garlic are both big no-no’s.


  • Skin, Fat & Cooked Bones — Skin and fat can be a choking hazard and can be harmful to your dog’s pancreas. Bones can splinter, which can cause pretty serious damage as well.


  • Stems, Seeds, Leaves & Pits – These sometimes forgotten food parts contain cyanogenic glycosides, which are compounds that are poisonous for dogs.


  • Raisins & Grapes – These are pretty well known to be bad for dogs. They are toxic and can cause damage to the kidneys.


  • Alcohol – Do we have to explain?


  • Chocolate – Chocolate has theobromine, a chemical that is toxic to your pup.


  • Processed Sugar and Xylitol – Those pies, cakes and pastries look great to your dog! But these kinds of sugary sweets aren’t good for them in general – and they can cause an upset stomach pretty easily. Xylitol on the other hand is far more dangerous for dogs than sugar, so watch where your pup is during dessert.


The Holiday Foods ‘Nice List’

The foods below are healthy and safe options for your dog during the holidays and throughout the year:


  • Broccoli, Carrots, Sweet Potatoes, Yams & Zucchini – These veggies all have tons of vitamins, beneficial minerals, fiber and H2O that will fill your dog up in a healthy way.


  • Chicken & Turkey (Boneless & Skinless) – These two protein options are well loved by most dogs. Keep portions limited.


  • Extra Virgin Olive and Coconut Oil – These healthful oils do fantastic things for the coat and fur, and provide benefits to your dog’s overall health.


  • Apples and Cranberries – Both of these fruits contain fiber and vitamin C. Remove the stems and seeds from the apples! Even natural sugar can cause issues in dogs so make sure to limit fruit intake.


  • Peanut Butter/Almond Butter – Dogs all over seem to love peanut butter and the less ubiquitous almond butter. They’re both healthy for dogs in limited quantity, contributing to a healthy cardiovascular system. They can also help your dog feel full, which comes in handy!

Be sure to contact your veterinarian with any questions about food safety for you dog. Happy holidays and Happy New Year from the vets and staff at Croton Animal Hospital .


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