The Student News Site of Ocean Lakes High School

The Current

The Student News Site of Ocean Lakes High School

The Current

The Student News Site of Ocean Lakes High School

The Current

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Safe Thanksgiving foods for dogs to feast on

English Teacher Kristi Bayer’s golden retriever Reesee Rosie hops up on the kitchen counter on her “gotcha” day on August 13, 2023. Bayer shares foods like sweet potato, apples, pears, watermelon, cantaloupe, but she avoids citrus foods. Photo used with permission from Kristi Bayer.

When pets beg for food, it’s tempting to toss something under the table; however, some traditional Thanksgiving foods are dangerous to man’s best friend. 

“While it may be tempting to give your floof a nibble (or three) while you’re making Thanksgiving dinner, it’s essential to be mindful of their sensitive tummies and palettes. Our dogs don’t have the same digestion system as we humans do, and some foods can be toxic for them,” said Lindsay Tigar on Daily Paws.

While canines can scarf down plain turkey meat, cranberries, sweet potatoes and regular potatoes, green beans and pumpkin, these foods should not substitute a meal for and only consumed in moderation. 

For example, add only a quarter cup of canned pumpkin or sprinkle a handful of raw green beans to a four-legged family member’s dinner.

Sophomore Alicia Han has experienced the panic of her own dog ingesting the wrong food.

“Once my dog Simba ate a chicken bone. She started choking, and my mom freaked out,” said Alicia.

These furry friends cannot consume turkey skin, bones, mushrooms, stuffing and any dish with onion, garlic or butter. 

“Sometimes I give my dog Frisket stuffing or cranberry sauce,” said sophomore Ari Champion. “But I only give a spoonful  because my dog is fat. I never give him citrus-stuff or onions because I know it’s not good for him.”

All desserts, though delicious for humans, also cannot be shared.

Dr. Nicole Cromwell, a local veterinarian who co-owns The Coastal Vet, commonly sees dogs with adverse reactions to foods. Food sensitivities in dogs can show up as skin rashes, diarrhea or vomiting. 

“When dogs do have food sensitivities, it can range from a dog just eating something that upset their stomach to inflammatory bowel disease,” said Cromwell.

Cromwell was born and raised in Virginia Beach and attended Cox High School. 

She doesn’t shy away from feeding dogs human food, as long as it is done mindfully.

“Ideally, vegetables not cooked in too much salt or butter are fine,” said Dr. Cromwell. “We typically see pancreatitis around Thanksgiving… fatty meals causing the pancreas to go into overdrive.”

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About the Contributor
Natalie Ritz, Design Editor
Natalie Ritz is a sophomore in the Math and Science Academy, and a first-year journalism student. Natalie is the fourth of five siblings, and enjoys all things summer and outdoors. Outside of school, she enjoys baking, shopping and going to the beach with friends. Natalie loves weight lifting and hiking. One thing that always makes her smile is her goofy golden retriever named Brandy.

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