Turkey Stuffing Toxic To Cats

Turkey stuffing, the RSPCA tell us, is toxic to cats and dogs. As Christmas has arrived, cat and dog caretakers who are unaware should be warned. Not that cats like turkey stuffing but if some of it is attached to pieces of turkey it may be ingested by a cat.

Angela Grigg of Putney Animal Hospital, London (a place I have walked past many times) said that there were 15 cases of dogs being poisoned by turkey mixed with turkey stuffing last year.

I had never heard of this before. A quarter of 867 people surveyed by the RSPCA didn’t realise either. I bet the figure is higher than that, actually.

It is the onions in stuffing that poisons dogs. It causes vomiting, diarrhea and dehydration as a result.

As for cats, I am not sure what it is in the stuffing that might hurt a cat. My immediate research indicates that in some (perhaps all) recipes turkey stuffing contains a large quantity of currants or raisins. Currants and raisins can be toxic to cats and dogs. They can cause kidney failure.

There may be high levels of salt and some alcohol in stuffing too. Both can harm cats and presumably dogs.

Also, if you buy pre-prepared turkey stuffing you don’t what is in it. There may be some chemicals that are also toxic.

My cat doesn’t like Turkey. He’s a chicken man. Anyway I don’t do Christmas!

See Toxic to cats for some more nasties.

Please search using the search box at the top of the site. You are bound to find what you are looking for.

Useful tag. Click to see the articles: Cat behavior

21 thoughts on “Turkey Stuffing Toxic To Cats”

  1. Tamara Beinlich

    Well I guess I been poisoning my dogs and cats for 5 decades. I only use celery and onions and herbs in my stuffing and no one has ever died from it. They been eating my meatloaf with onions for 5 decades too but yet still no one has died or been sick. But then again I only use enough onion as a herb not as a flavoring. I think maybe my moderate use onions is why no one has been poisoned. Maybe it’s the use of that instant stuffing crap that sickens pets, I know it sickens me. πŸ™‚

    1. Well thanks Tamara. It must be about quantity. And also ‘poisoning’ is a very elastic word. It can mean no symptoms. I’ll revisit the page in the light of what you say. Hope you are well.

      1. Tamara Beinlich

        I just know everyone enjoys Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner in my house and then we all take a long nap πŸ™‚ Maybe it’s prepackaged stuffing has a preservative that sickens pets. But I do make everything from scratch except pie cuz I stink at pie making. I wish the Great Bake Off covered pies more.
        I’m doing well Mike preparing to start my garden plants inside for April planting. πŸ™‚ How are you doing?

        1. Tamara, my big priority is maintaining health at 74 and it’s okay at the moment. I hope to live to 90 ?. Now I have said I’ll probably pop my clogs tomorrow. Do you have that phrase in the US? Pop my clogs.

          1. Tamara Beinlich

            No. “Pop my clogs” LOL. My mom lived to 91. Me I just want to outlive all these kitties and 6 dogs. While mom was pretty active she did a lot of sitting which they call the new smoking. My neighbor is 78 and stays active and seems pretty healthy but has many health problems. Mom out lived 3 siblings and 3 children and most of my cousins, I’m the only one left but have 2 sons. I think it’s in the gene’s and luck of the draw.

              1. Tamara Beinlich

                Me either but mom was still driving in September when I got her in home hospice and gone on November 30th. She went downhill real fast. Just 3 days in a facility hospice and she was gone. I want to close my eyes and be done I don’t want to know it’s coming. Although your Captain Tom made me want to live longer, he inspired me. πŸ™‚

                  1. Tamara Beinlich

                    Mom was seeing things, didn’t know who she was. All her organs were shutting down, hadn’t eaten in 3 days. It was like dominoes and she went fast. Totally freaked me out. The in home hospice did her dirty because it was Thanksgiving weekend. They had set nothing up to help her for end of life like they were suppose too. I had no one to help me help her and it’s why I had to move her to a facility. It was a absolute horror. I actually fired them just hours before mom died and hired a new hospice. 1 hour after signing the papers she passed. Two days ago I received a call asking about her hospice care because medicare is finding some hospice are a rip off. Three Rivers Hospice is lucky I’m not a crazy gun toting nut. πŸ™‚

                    1. A horror story. I shake my head in despair. On the day my dad died in his sleep I visited his room. He was hyperventilating and there were two people attending to him. He was clearly terrified but I believe he had asked the doctor to give him a fatal dose of morphine to end his life. And I believe that the doctor had agreed to do it. And therefore, he knew that he was going to die that night in his sleep. Realising this, his body automatically panicked. He couldn’t help himself. He looked at me and said with his eyes that everything was all right. He was asking me not to intervene through his expression. Those were the last moments of his long life.

  2. Dr. Hush Puppy- bless his little heart wants me remind y’all to hang mistletoe made of plastic or fabric up high in a doorway- if’n you want to be kissed. He added that mistletoe is extremely toxic for us kitties – and while it’s pretty please ditch the holly.

    And of course do not give us coffee, chocolate or anything containing artificial sweeteners. We felines around the world thank you! And wish you a meowy catmas- and to all “good night”.

  3. Ruth aka Kattaddorra

    Raw, cooked or powdered onion is toxic to cats as is garlic. Onion is not only found in stuffing but sometimes in pizzas, tomato sauce, chinese takeaways, some baby foods, sandwich meats, tinned spaghetti, burgers, gravy, etc, the list in endless.
    Best feed cats cat food or home cooked chicken or turkey to be safe, it’s not worth the risk of them being ill…or worse.

    1. I knew onions and grapes in any form,(altho one of my Sadie’s old fav’s) are very toxic for dogs.Had NOOOO idea cats were so badly effected…course I also always thought that cats had better sense then most dogs!!! Also if anyone is ‘trimming a tree”…please folks toss out that silver “stringy” tinsel!!! Cats love the stuff ,chewing on it and ingesting it . Which in turn becomes wrapped around their internal parts!!!! One of my friends lost both her kitties Christmas one year and the vet did a necroscopy on the youngest , finding that the “lovely , tinsel” had knotted and looped itself around inside and basically cut the poor babies insides.(Sorry for the visual) They are attracted to it like yarn and thread. Sorry..getting off topic here….Altho my animals have always gotten goodies from the table , I for one can say they do NOT get the whole feast . Turkey with their food and that’s it! BTW…I know NUTMEG is also toxic,(found in most all pumpkin pies)

      1. toss out that silver β€œstringy” tinsel!!!

        Good point Jan. I think tinsel is very dangerous to cats and there is a lot of it at Christmas, frequently on the floor.

        1. I use to LOVE the stuff . But after that I would actually tell people in stores that I’d see buying it not to buy it and why! DOGS too! I know we all love sharing our holidays with our pets , but there are so many decorations and poisonous plants it’s really scary . I think if I ever do get to the point of deciding to put up a tree again I’ll just decorate using pet toys and the rest be damned!!!!LMAO! At least that way I will know there is nothing harmful and if any company doesn’t approve they can leave!!! And the rest of us can have Happy Holidays worry free!

  4. Onions cause a type of anaemia in cats. However they need to eat either a single large dose or repeated small doses to suffer serious anaemia (and most don’t like the taste anyway). A tiny amount of stuffing stuck to a piece of turkey won’t be enough to cause harm. A spoonful of the stuff would be more of a problem. Onion gravy will add to the problem.

    The main problem is people serving their pets a festive dinner with the trimmings. Dogs will happily eat the lot regardless of what is good or bad for them. Most cats are more discerning unless the onion is heavily diguised.

    Stuffing is much nicer when cooked separately anyway.

    1. Thanks Sarah. From your comment I deduce that the dog is far at more at risk than the cat at Christmas, which is what I would expect because they wolf almost any human food (as far as I know). I hope your job is going well and I wish you and your cats a Happy Christmas.

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