Man’s best friend has a way of looking at you pleadingly every time you sit down to eat, and it makes you want to give them a treat from your fork. Even if they’re not giving you puppy dog eyes at the dinner table, you love your pooch so much it’s tempting to give them treats more often than not.
The trouble is though, many snacks that we give our dogs without thinking can actually cause them harm. Obviously, you don’t want to hurt Rover, so here’s the foods you should avoid giving your dog, and the treats that are actually good for them.
What To Avoid
Chocolate: We love chocolate, and of course, dogs love it too. However, human chocolate is incredibly dangerous for them. It can cause a high heart rate, muscle tremors, and seizures, as it acts as a stimulant on dogs.
Anti-Freeze: Yes, of course you’re not going to be feeding your dog this, but they can easily ingest it. It can drip from your car, leading to your dog licking it up. If ingested, vomiting, diarrhoea and breathing difficulties can follow. If you think your dog has ingested anti-freeze, get them to the vet as soon as you can.
Cakes, Sweets and Mints: These foods contain artificial sweeteners, which can cause your dog’s bloody pressure to drop dangerously low.
Grapes and Raisins: No one quite knows why these are so dangerous for dogs, but they’re a serious risk for them. If your dog eats them, they can cause their kidneys to shut down within 48 hours, so keep your dog away from them.
Sausages: Most dog owners don’t think twice about giving their dogs sausages, as they’re meat and therefore should be safe, right? However, they can cause thiamine failure in dogs, so don’t give them these treats.
Cooked Bones: Dogs and bones go together like cookies and milk, but cooked bones are a no no. They splinter much more easily, making them a choking hazard. Instead, buy bones from the pet store for your dog to have a good gnaw on.
Cows’ Milk: Like cats, dogs are actually lactose intolerant once they’re weaned. It’s a good idea to keep cow’s milk away from them.
Onions and Garlic: These seem harmless enough, and some dog owners like to pop some garlic or onion into their dog’s food. However, it’s better to leave it out, as it can cause Heinz body anemia.
What You Can Give Your Dog
Seaweed: This savory treat can have a lot of benefits for your pooch, including an anti tumor response, better immune function, and improved fat metabolism.
Doggy Chocolate: If you want your dog to enjoy a chocolate treat, buy them some specialist doggy chocs. These are designed for dogs especially, meaning they’re totally safe to give them.
Carrots: If your dog loves chewing stuff, a carrot could be just the thing for them. It gives them something to chew on, and can even help aid blood clotting and improve your dog’s energy levels.
Apples: Apples are a fantastic treat for your dog, as they have so many benefits. Again, they satisfy the dog’s need to chew. They also help produce pectin, which can remove toxins from their intestinal tract, and remove harmful bacteria.
Grass: Many dog owners worry when their dogs start eating grass, but it’s actually fine for them to do so. It’s full of micro nutrients, so let them eat the grass in your backyard if they go for it.
Soy Milk: Want to give your dog some milk? Soy milk is totally fine for them. It’s lactose free, so it won’t cause them any problems at all.
Sweet Potatoes: This delicious vegetable is something that your dog will love munching on too. It’s packed full of nutrients that they need to be healthy, such as fiber, potassium, and vitamins A and C.
Blueberries: These berries are great for dogs, as they’re packed with antioxidants and other nutrients that they’ll feel the benefit of. However, be careful and introduce them slowly to your dog’s diet, or they could experience gastrointestinal problems.
What Else You Need To Know
We love giving our dogs treats, so many of us tend to overdo it. However, you should only be using treats as 10% of your pet’s overall diet. Any more than that, and they could be at risk of putting on weight, and associated health issues.
Remember, some dogs are quite happy to eat anything that you out in front of them, whether it’s good for them or not. Be careful with what you give your dogs, so they’re eating things that are only good for them.
Follow these tips when looking for treats that your dogs can safely enjoy. Your beloved dogs can enjoy a tasty treat that can benefit their health, when you pick treats that are good for them.