A dog with a happy expression looking at raw turkey, highlighting healthy food for dogs.

Can Dogs Eat Raw Turkey?

Yes, dogs can eat raw turkey, but it's a bit complicated. It's not as simple as tossing a drumstick to Fido. Raw turkey can carry bacteria like Salmonella, which is harmful to both dogs and humans. If you're considering adding raw turkey to your dog's diet, you must take precautions and ensure it's fresh, properly sourced, and handled hygienically.

A photo of Stefan Stumpfl, the co-author of this article.

By Stefan Stumpfl, in collaboration with Dr. Ali Raza.

Updated on Jul 4, 2024

Did You Know?

Raw turkey bones are generally safe for dogs to eat because they do not splinter like cooked bones.

Raw Turkey



Rating: 4 out of 5 stars๐Ÿ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ


Rating: 5 out of 5 stars๐Ÿช๐Ÿช๐Ÿช๐Ÿช๐Ÿช


Rating: 4 out of 5 stars๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

Feeding Frequency


Allergic Risk


Why Is Raw Turkey Healthy for Dogs?

Raw turkey can provide an array of nutrients like protein, vitamins B6 and B12, and zinc. These contribute to muscle maintenance, a healthy immune system, and overall vitality. Some veterinarians even support raw diets as they can mimic a dog's ancestral eating habits. However, it's crucial to balance these nutrients with other food sources.

Do Dogs Like Raw Turkey?

Most dogs do enjoy raw turkey! Itโ€™s tasty and packed with flavors that appeal to their natural carnivorous instincts. However, every dog is different, and while some may gobble it up, others might be less enthusiastic.

Can Puppies Eat Raw Turkey?

Puppies can eat raw turkey, but with extra caution. Their immune systems are still developing, making them more susceptible to bacteria. Always consult your vet before introducing raw turkey to a puppyโ€™s diet to avoid any health risks.

Can Dogs Be Allergic to Raw Turkey?

Yes, some dogs can be allergic to turkey, although it's relatively uncommon. Signs of an allergy can include itching, digestive issues, and ear infections. If you suspect your dog might be allergic, it's best to stop feeding them turkey and consult your vet.

How Much Raw Turkey Can Dogs Eat?

The amount of raw turkey your dog can safely eat depends on their size and dietary needs. Typically, raw feeding guidelines suggest about 2-3% of a dogโ€™s body weight per day in raw food, including turkey. Split this into two meals. Overfeeding turkey can lead to nutritional imbalances, so moderation is key.

Best Ways to Incorporate Raw Turkey Into Your Dogโ€™s Diet

Start by introducing small amounts of raw turkey to your dogโ€™s diet. Use boneless, skinless pieces to avoid any choking hazards. Mixing it with their regular food can make the transition smoother. Always ensure the turkey is fresh and clean.

Potential Risks of Raw Turkey

Feeding raw turkey comes with risks like bacterial contamination and nutritional imbalances if it's not part of a balanced diet. Bones can also pose a choking hazard or cause internal injuries. Be vigilant and consult your vet to mitigate these risks.

Other Healthy Food Options

If raw turkey isn't an option, consider these alternatives:

  • Chicken: Easy to digest and widely loved.
  • Beef: Packed with protein and iron.
  • Salmon: Rich in Omega-3 fatty acids for a shiny coat.


Raw turkey can be a healthy addition to your dogโ€™s diet, offering valuable nutrients and appealing flavors. However, it requires careful handling and moderation to ensure safety. Always talk to your vet before making any significant changes to your dogโ€™s diet. Balance is everything!