Human Food for Dogs
Before you give your dog a bite of your food, you should know that not all human food is suitable for dogs to eat. Many foods like grapes, raisins, chocolate, xylitol, onions, garlic and macadamia nuts are highly toxic to dogs. If you're ever in need, consider Allivet, an online pet pharmacy that provides a wide range of pet medications, supplements and other pet care products, or Simparica, a prescription medication for dogs that is used to control fleas and ticks.
In this blog post, we’ll look at some of the nutritious human foods that our dogs can enjoy, as well as those that are a strict no-no!
Safe Human Food For Dogs
There's nothing like seeing your pup's face light up as they enjoy something special from the dinner table! While it’s important to remember that dogs should never be given a regular diet of human food, some human foods are safe for dogs. Let’s take a look at which options are best.
One of the most essential nutrients for dogs and humans is protein. Protein helps build strong muscles and boosts energy levels.
There are excellent sources of lean protein that can be added to your dog's regular diet in moderation, such as cooked chicken, turkey, salmon, lean cuts of pork or beef, boiled eggs, and cheese.
If you are feeding protein, ensure you thoroughly debone the cut of meat, and you aren’t feeding your dog any cooked bones that could pose a choking hazard or tear the intestines.
Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are packed with vitamins and minerals to help keep your pup healthy and happy. Some of the best fruits for dogs include apples, bananas, blueberries, strawberries, cantaloupe, and watermelon. As for vegetables, cooked carrots, green beans, sweet potatoes, celery, and broccoli are all good choices. NO onions or avocados, and more on that later!
Grains & Dairy Products
Grains such as rice or oats can provide essential carbohydrates needed for energy throughout the day. Dairy products like plain yogurt with no added sweeteners can provide probiotics that help support digestive health. However, it’s important to note that dairy products should generally be avoided if your pup is lactose intolerant—a vet visit may help determine this!
Peanut butter is a versatile spread that can give your dog hours of entertainment, especially when frozen and stuffed in a toy like the Kong!
Use only organic peanut butter without any preservatives and additives. Excessive amounts of sugar and salt aren’t good for humans, and they certainly aren’t good for dogs! Also, be sure that your dog doesn’t have a nut allergy. Your vet could help you with that.
If you have questions about what human foods are safe for your pup, always check with your veterinarian first.
Dangerous Human Food For Dogs
More importantly, some human foods are potentially toxic to dogs and should be avoided with a ten-foot pole. If you have some of these foods around the house, keep them out of reach and safely secured in a cabinet; these foods include:
Most dog owners know that chocolate is toxic to dogs, especially in high amounts. The culprit here is theobromine, and excessive ingestion of chocolate or cacao powder can have severe consequences.
Onions, Garlic, Chives, and Leek
These veggies are from the allium family, which is toxic to dogs. Ingestion of small amounts might not spark a reaction in your dog, but why take the risk?
Keep any leftovers that contain these ingredients far away from your pup, or you might have a dog with a sore tummy.
Xylitol is a sugar alcohol that makes a great sugar alternative for humans, but it can be toxic to dogs. It is found in many types of food, like chewing gum and mouthwash.
Xylitol interacts with the body differently than regular sugars and can rapidly decrease the dog's blood glucose levels - resulting in seizures, collapsed veins, difficulty breathing, vomiting, and even death.
Dogs who ingest xylitol can show these symptoms within 15 to 30 minutes, so it is important to seek immediate veterinary treatment if your dog has ingested any product containing xylitol. It is always best to err on the side of caution and keep all products containing xylitol out of reach from pets and children.
Macadamia nuts are a popular snack food, but unfortunately, they can be very harmful to dogs. These nuts contain a toxin that can cause vomiting, lethargy, and muscle tremors. If ingested, the toxicity may not take effect right away; however, it can present itself within 12 hours of ingestion with symptoms lasting up to 48 hours.
Feeding macadamia nuts to any dog should be avoided, as even the smallest amounts can cause significant risks to their health and well-being.
A chemical in avocados called person is known to cause toxicity in animals like birds, dogs, cats, and horses. If consumed excessively, avocados can also cause toxicity symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea.
At best, toxic food for dogs can give your precious pooch a tummy ache. At worst, your dog could have food toxicity, which is a leading cause of veterinary visits.
Symptoms of food toxicity in dogs can range from mild vomiting or diarrhea to sudden death. Knowing what foods are toxic for your pup and avoiding them is the best way to protect your furry family member.
If you notice any vomiting, diarrhea, drooling, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, trembling, unsteadiness, seizures, or your pet is just acting off or unlike their usual selves after eating something unusual, it’s essential to watch for these warning signs and seek prompt veterinary attention if they occur.
So there you have it! Before you think about sharing your oh-so-yummy dinner with your dog, be sure to keep in mind what is potentially in it.
In addition, pay attention to the food labels when purchasing new items and consult your vet before introducing any changes to your dog’s diet.