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Christmas Food for Dogs: What's Safe and What's Not?

Can my dog enjoy a Christmas dinner?

The holiday season is upon us, and it's a time of warmth, togetherness, and indulgence. We all love sharing our festive meals with our loved ones, and that includes our furry companions. After all, our dogs are family, and we want to see them happy during the most wonderful time of the year. But when it comes to Christmas food for dogs, what's safe and what's not? In this detailed guide, we will explore the dos and don'ts of including your pup at your Christmas feast. Let's ensure your four-legged friend has a safe and joyous holiday season.

christmas and dogs
christmas and dogs

What Christmas Food Can Dogs Eat?

1. Special doggie treats

Can your dog enjoy some festive treats too? Absolutely! Look for dog-friendly goodies specially designed for them. These treats are not only safe but also a great way to make your dog feel like a part of the celebrations. They come in various holiday-themed shapes and flavours, ensuring that your furry friend doesn't miss out on the festive spirit.

2. Lean proteins

If you're thinking of sharing your Christmas meal with your dog, opt for lean proteins like turkey or chicken. Ensure the meat is plain, thoroughly cooked, and free from seasonings. Lean proteins can be a delightful addition to your dog's regular diet, but remember to serve them in moderation. Avoid overindulgence to prevent any gastrointestinal issues.

3. Fresh Fruits and Veggies

Surprisingly, some fruits and vegetables, such as apples, carrots, and green beans, can be a healthy and festive snack for dogs. These items provide essential nutrients and are a great alternative to store-bought treats. You can even create a colourful and nutritious holiday doggy salad with a mix of these fresh ingredients.

4. Dog-Friendly Desserts

Yes, there are dog-safe desserts available, and they can add a touch of sweetness to your pet's holiday experience. Consider frozen yogurt designed for dogs or explore recipes for homemade dog-friendly ice cream. Just remember to avoid artificial sweeteners like xylitol, which can be harmful to dogs. These desserts can be a delicious and safe way to let your dog indulge in some sweetness during the holidays.

5. Hydration

Amidst the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it's easy to overlook your pet's water bowl. However, staying hydrated is crucial. Ensure your dog has constant access to clean, fresh water throughout the day. Proper hydration is vital for your dog's well-being, especially if they enjoy the occasional treat.

christmas food for dogs
christmas food for dogs

Christmas Food for Dogs: What to Avoid

1. Chocolate

Chocolate is a well-known hazard for dogs due to the presence of theobromine and caffeine, which can be toxic to them. Keep all chocolate-based goodies out of their reach, including cookies, cocoa, and chocolate-covered snacks. Even a small amount can lead to symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, rapid breathing, and, in severe cases, seizures or death.

2. Grapes and raisins

Grapes and raisins are another food item that should never be given to dogs. They can lead to kidney failure and other serious health issues. Make sure your fruitcake, if it's part of your holiday tradition, is well out of your furry friend's reach. Even a few grapes or raisins can have devastating consequences.

3. Onions and garlic

Onions and garlic, often used as seasonings in holiday dishes, can be harmful to dogs. These ingredients can lead to anemia and digestive problems. Be cautious about what you serve, and ensure your dog doesn't get a taste of dishes seasoned with onions or garlic. It's best to prepare separate, dog-friendly portions without these ingredients.

4. Bones

While it might be tempting to give your dog a bone to gnaw on, it's not a good idea. Cooked bones can splinter and cause choking or damage to the digestive tract. Opt for safe and specially designed dog chews instead. These chews are not only enjoyable for your dog but also safe, ensuring they don't ingest any harmful bone splinters.

5. Alcoholic Beverages

The holiday season often involves alcoholic drinks, but these can be extremely dangerous for dogs. Keep them away from any spilled or unattended drinks to avoid accidents. Alcohol poisoning can lead to severe health issues, so it's best to ensure your pet's safety by preventing their access to alcoholic beverages.

How to Make Your Dog's Christmas Special and Safe?

Now that you know what Christmas food your dog can and cannot eat, it's time to make their holiday special. Here are some tips to ensure your dog has a safe and joyful Christmas:

Planning Ahead.

Start your holiday preparations by planning ahead. Make a list of dog-safe treats and foods you can share with your furry friend. This will help you avoid any last-minute temptations to feed them something that could be harmful.

Moderation is key.

While it's tempting to spoil your dog with delicious treats, remember that moderation is crucial. Overindulgence can lead to an upset stomach or worse. Stick to small portions of safe foods and treats, and consider these extra goodies as special rewards for your pet's good behaviour.

Create dog-friendly options.

Get creative and create a special dog-friendly dish as part of your Christmas dinner. There are plenty of recipes available for dog-safe dishes that you can make, ensuring your pup has a delightful and safe meal. Consider a plate with lean, unseasoned turkey or a vegetable medley that includes dog-safe veggies like carrots and green beans.

Mind the guests.

If you're hosting a Christmas gathering, inform your guests about what your dog can and cannot eat. Ask them to avoid sharing human food with your dog, even if they have the best intentions. Some guests may not be aware of the potential dangers certain foods can pose to dogs, so it's essential to communicate your pet's dietary restrictions.

Safe dog treats.

When choosing dog treats, look for those that are specifically designed for your dog's size and breed. This ensures they are appropriate and safe for your furry friend. You can even make your dog's holiday treats at home, giving you full control over the ingredients and portion sizes.


In conclusion, sharing your Christmas meal with your dog can be a wonderful experience, as long as you prioritize their safety and well-being. With thoughtful planning and a little extra effort, you can ensure that your four-legged family member enjoys a happy and healthy Christmas.

Remember, it's not just the season of giving for humans but for our pets as well. Make your dog's Christmas special by giving them safe and delicious treats, and most importantly, your love and attention. A little care goes a long way in ensuring your dog has a joyous holiday season.

For more tips and information on ensuring a safe and happy holiday season for your pets, visit Instachew. Your furry friend will thank you with tail wags and joyful barks, and you can enjoy a memorable holiday season with your beloved pet.

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