As all puppy parents can attest, one of the greatest things about our dogs is the way they show unconditional love. They have short memories when it comes to our failings. Instead, we are greeted with wags and kisses – every time. And they call it puppy love …
Of course you’re going to love your dog back! This kind of love deserves another belly rub, another treat, just a little food off my plate. A good dose of spoiling can’t hurt, or can it? Well, some of that love may actually make them sick. Let’s take a look at feeding them what we’re eating.
The Dangers of Table Food
Veterinarians have warned dog owners for decades about not feeding table food, but you’re not alone in ignoring their advice and slipping them a few morsels from your plate – who can resist those big brown eyes! When it comes to feeding your furry friend from the table, you need to know the dangers which fall into three categories: foods that are toxic to pets, foods that are too high in fat and rewarding begging can create a dinner table junkie.
The last one is a behavioral issue, but the other two may affect them physically. When it comes to human food, most pet parents have no idea of the number of foods that are toxic to pets! Chocolate, of course, but that’s good because you don’t have to share! You’re hearing more about grapes and raisins causing liver and kidney failure. But there are so many common foods such as dairy products, nuts and salty snacks that can lead to digestive issues such as vomiting or doggie diarrhea. So know your “do not feed” foods.
Fatty foods are a big problem. The more fat content, the better the food tastes, so naturally we want more of it. Steak, pizza, gravy, just a little of that crispy chicken skin. The problem comes in when we think we’re really treating our dogs with it. The younger dogs may be able to handle such no no’s, but middle age dogs often react to even a small amount of fatty foods. They can develop pancreatitis, a serious, painful inflammation of the pancreas; or less severe cases of digestive upset causing doggie diarrhea or vomiting.
Human Foods You Can Feed Them
- Low-fat proteins such as cottage cheese, yogurt, cooked egg, lean chicken and salmon are actually healthy additions to your dog’s diet. But most red meats are too high in fat, so best to avoid those.
- Easily digested carbohydrates such as cooked rice, pasta and oatmeal are not likely do upset the stomach. Often these are included in what’s known as a “bland diet” – commonly used to feed your dog until the digestive tract is settled.
- Vegetables are a good choice, but not onions or garlic. Carrots are usually a big hit and canned green beans are often used when it’s time for some weight loss.
- Fruits, other than grapes, can be a real treat. Melons, strawberries and bananas are great choices, but bananas are high in sugar, so don’t overdo it.
So use good judgment when you want to return the love with human food. Avoid the high fats, hot spicy foods and the pet-toxic tidbits to keep your dog healthy. Also, don’t replace your dog’s well-balanced diet with too many goodies. Just like humans, we are better to remember the rule “everything in moderation.”
Want to learn more about a bland diet solution for doggie diarrhea?
This blog is brought to you by Under the Weather, provider of products for sick dogs.