Healthy Treats for Dogs from our Table

woman feeding her dog with vegetables

Pretty much all dog owners love to spoil their canine best friends, and this often means giving them treats – whether they have been particularly good or not! As responsible and loving dog owners, we all have one main priority – ensuring that our four-legged best friend remains as healthy, active and happy as possible. In doing so, we can hopefully enjoy many years with these wonderful companions. Nutrition plays a key part of this journey.

Why we need to watch what our dogs eat

Although we always give treats with the best intentions, the fact of the matter is that there are many foods that we might share that simply aren’t good for our pets. Many modern products contain high levels of salt or sugar that could contribute towards poor health, while others have ingredients, such as grapes, raisins or nuts, that are actually toxic to our furbabies.

Eating right is just as important for your pet as it is for you and I. Eating the wrong foods too often can cause nutritional deficiencies and health problems. Too much fatty foods or regularly eating too many calories can cause your pooch to put on weight, and this is also detrimental to her wellbeing. In fact, obesity can significantly shorten your pet’s lifespan and cause a number of unpleasant side effects including aching joints, arthritis, respiratory difficulties and diabetes.

If you do want to treat your pet, pay close attention to what you are giving but also how many extra calories you are giving this way. Wherever possible, choose healthy foods from the list below.

So, what healthy treats should I share with my dog?

There are many human snacks that are considered fairly healthy for dogs provided they are given in controlled quantities.

Vegetables to share

Some of the vegetables that provide nutritional benefits for your canine pal while still being a treat include:

- Carrots. You can even freeze them in summer and give them to your dog as popsicles, which will help him cool down.

- Pumpkin. Choose fresh or canned, not the sugary pie-filling kind!

- Cucumbers. These are great for extra hydration in summer!

- Peas. Try and avoid the canned variety as these have unnecessary additives.

- Green beans.

- Sweet potato. Mashed, sliced or even made into toast, sweet potato is a very popular treat with our furry friends!

Fruits to share

Fruit is a very nutritious and health snack for your furbaby. Some of the fruits that you can share include:

- Banana. Again, these can be frozen into popsicles for a great summer-time treat.

- Blueberries. These are packed with anti-oxidants which help battle inflammation and can benefit your pet’s overall health. They are also small enough to pop into a container in your pocket to use them as a training treat!

- Apples. Just be sure not to feed the seeds as these contain small levels of a cyanide compound.

- Pears. See above!

- Strawberries. Dogs love a delicious strawberry as much as we do, and they are packed with helpful vitamin C.

Miscellaneous healthy foods that you can share

- Peanut butter. Only give peanut butter to your pet in moderation as it is very high in fat. It makes a great filler for toys with treat compartments too.

- Oatmeal. Oatmeal helps aid your dog’s digestive system and is high in many essential vitamins and minerals, such as iron, copper and magnesium.

- Pasta. Dogs are very partial to a bit of pasta and will happily have a small serving of this Italian delicacy.

- Cheese. Again, this is something that is high in fat so should be given sparingly.

- Eggs are a superb way to boost the amount of protein your pet is getting.

- Cooked meat. Protein is a crucial aspect of your pet’s nutrition and slices of cooked meat are a fantastic treat in the eyes of virtually any dog.

If you need further advice on finding healthy treats for your dogs, contact our offices to arrange an appointment with our dedicated and professional surgeon.