Dog parents know how quickly your pup will break out the puppy eyes as soon as you start to make a snack.
Whether your dog is the shadow to every move you make, the ready floor vacuum for any dropped crumbs, or the begger stealing glances at the food in your hand, most dog parents know the feeling of being watched while snacking. It can be really tempting to share some of our food with our dogs – and the general rule of thumb is not to share table scraps with your dog.
Not only can fatty or novel foods upset your dog‘s gastrointestinal system, but a lot of ingredients and seasonings we use are toxic to dogs as well. However, there are a few dog-safe foods that you CAN share with your dog – in moderation of course.
Remember that treats shouldn’t make up more than 10 percent of your pet’s daily calorie intake. If you’re not sure how much that comes out to for your pup, be sure to talk to your vet at your next visit for their recommendations.
These are a good low-calorie snack and contain antioxidants as well as vitamin C. You can feed these whole, squish them up, or bake them into treats. Be sure to monitor your dog if feeding them whole, as they can become a choking hazard – gently squishing them before feeding may be helpful for overly eager treat-takers.
Remember, GRAPES are toxic to dogs, and should never be fed as a treat.
I prefer to feed these shredded because baby carrots or carrot chunks can be a choking hazard to an eager dog – but they are a fun and healthy snack you can sprinkle on their food or give alone. You can even bake a few shredded carrots into a dog treat as a low-calorie addition.
A lot of dog parents prefer to feed peanuts in the form of peanut butter, which is a great way to hide a pill, distract your pet, or provide enrichment. For example, you may spread a small amount of peanut butter on a silicone pet mat and freeze it to give as a cool treat.
It’s important to look on your peanut butter label to make sure there isn’t any XYLITOL in it, a severe toxin to dogs, that can cause severe hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and can be deadly.
While we’re talking nuts, you may not know that MACADAMIA nuts are toxic to dogs – so make sure to pay attention to what you’re giving them.
This is a healthy snack and is sometimes used as a “filler food” for overweight dogs, to provide volume to their bowl and lower the calories. Canned or fresh green beans may be fed, but if feeding canned vegetables be sure to check the ingredients and make sure no seasonings are added, particularly garlic or onions, which are toxic to dogs and cats.
Similarly to peanut butter, make sure the applesauce doesn’t contain any artificial sweeteners or xylitol. Applesauce is another versatile treat that you can freeze (as pictured), bake into dog treats, or feed by itself.
Remember that all of these foods should be fed in moderation – and if your dog has allergies or sensitivities you should talk to your vet before trying out something new.