People are becoming more aware of what is in the foods that they eat and which foods have health benefits. It is just as important to know what you are feeding your pet.
What foods are safe for dogs to eat?
There are many foods that we can give our dogs as treats that do have some positive health benefits. With any treat give moderation, an overweight pet can have many health issues. Hopefully, this gives you some new ideas of fun, alternative treats for your dog.
There are a lot of different foods that you can feed your dog. Most rice and select fruits are a great start. Adding peanut butter, fish and eggs to your dog’s diet will give them an added bonus of protein.
Peanut butter: This is definitely a favorite in our household. A quick lick of a spoon or spooned into a toy for long term entertainment. This treat provides healthy fats, protein and vitamins B and E. The caution here is some products now contain xylitol as a sweeter which is poisonous, always check the label.
Fish: This protein has omega-3 fatty acids, amino acids, and vitamins. Watch for bones and thoroughly cook this treat.
Eggs: Go ahead and scramble an egg for your dog for Sunday brunch. Good source of protein. Make sure this treat is completely cooked because of the same risk of salmonella food poisoning.
Honey: This sweet treat has vitamins A, B, C, D, E and K, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and antioxidants. It can also help reduce seasonal allergies because it introduces small amounts of pollen into the system.
Yogurt: Good source of active cultures and probiotics for gut health. However, some dogs are lactose intolerant. Also, avoid added sugars and artificial sweeteners.
Carrots: High in fiber and vitamin A. It is also low calorie and is a great treat for pooches watching their weight.
Apples: High in fiber and also low calorie. Source of vitamin A and C.
Oatmeal: Good source of dietary fiber. Packed with vitamins and minerals.
Pumpkin: Fresh or canned with no additives is high in fiber and vitamin A. This a great additive for those with sensitive stomachs.
Quinoa: This is a common ingredient used in human cooking. It is lower in starches than corn, soy, and wheat, which is used in many dry kibble foods (all of which are good sources of nutrients for pets).
Coconut Oil: Another health fad in humans is also safe for dogs. It helps with immunity and itchy skin.
Blueberries: This super fruit is rich in antioxidants and vitamins. For a refreshing treat on a hot day give these frozen.
There are some foods that are not safe and toxic to pets. This is no way a complete list but does have a few of the common toxic items. It is important to contact your veterinarian or poison control if your pet ingests any of these dangerous items.
Certain nuts: almonds, macadamias, pecans, walnuts. Some nuts can cause an obstruction while others are actually toxic. It is best to avoid these.
Chocolate: Many consider this their own favorite treat but it is extremely toxic to dogs. The substance responsible for this is methylxanthine. It causes irregular heart function, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and death. The darker the chocolate the more toxic it is.
Garlic and Onions: The toxic substances in these items cause anemia, pale gums, elevated heart rate and weakness. The toxic effects are delayed and can show up a day after consumption.
Grapes and Raisins: It is unclear what makes grapes and raisins toxic but it causes lethargy, dehydration, and fatal kidney failure.