What Foods Are Good For Dogs? – A List of Safe Foods To Give Our Pets
If you’re unsure what foods are good for dogs, this post is for you. Thank you for doing your research. Many pet parents tend to treat their furry friends like humans and often unknowingly feed them food that are toxic. This has caused countless dogs to suffer.
Our concern as dog owners go beyond what’s toxic or not. We need to factor in choking hazards, allergic reactions, potential bacterial infections like Salmonella, Campylobacter, E. Coli Etc., possible damage to teeth, blockages in the intestines, concerns with elevated sugar, salt and fat levels in the blood and exposure to parasites.
This gives you an idea of the importance of feeding our dogs human foods that are known to be safe.
- Beef – Fat trimmings must be removed and must not contain any seasonings. Beef is rich in iron and protein. Cut to small portions to prevent choking. Must remove all bones.
- Chicken – Also a good source of protein. Make sure to remove the bones. It must be fully cooked and never given raw.
- Pork – Pork may contain a high number of parasites so make sure it is fully cooked (same for humans).
- Lamb – Some dogs have a food intolerance to proteins in beef or chicken. Lamb can be given as a replacement.
- Turkey – Yes but must be given plain without all the dressing. All bones and skin must be removed.
- Eggs – Eggs contain protein, B-12 , Riboflavin, Fatty acids, Omega-3 and Phospholipids. It must always be cooked and never given raw.
- Coconuts – Coconut oil and coconut milk are safe for dogs. It is a natural antibacterial and anti-fungal. It can also treat certain skin issues.
- Cheese – Some dogs are lactose intolerant. Low-fat varieties like Mozzarella or Cottage cheese are preferred.
- Bread – Bread may be given as an occassional treat but be aware that it may cause constipation. It also contains empty calories. Never give Raisin bread to dogs. If you’re baking bread, keep it away from reach. Raw dough can be dangerous to dogs.
- Peanuts and Peanut Butter – Peanuts contain B-12 and protein but are high in calories and fat. It’s safe but must be given in moderation. When giving peanut butter, read the label to make sure it doesn’t contain Xylitol. Do not give salted peanuts to your dog.
- Mushrooms – 99% of mushrooms are edible but not the wild mushroom variety as it may cause mushroom poisoning.
- Sardines – Sardines contain essential DHA and EPA which is critical for brain health. Sardine bones contain calcium. Avoid the ones with sunflower oil, palm oil, corn oil and only give those that come in plain water. Limit to once or twice a week.
- Tuna – Must be given plain and cannot contain any oil or spices. Give in moderation as tuna may contain Mercury
- Salmon – Salmon contains Tryptophan which helps produce Serotonin – the happy hormone. It also contains Omega-3s that can give your dog a shiny coat. Salmon is said to be a calming food.
- Shrimp – Contains B-12 and can be given as an occasional treat buy must not have any seasonings. It must be cooked and never given raw. The shell and tail are a choking hazard and must be removed.
- Yogurt – contains beneficial live bacteria which can prevent leaky gut syndrome and a host of other symptoms. Read the label to make sure it doesn’t contain Xylitol. Try to buy organic ones from a health store. Avoid the flavored variety and start slow.
- Rice – Rice can be given in moderation to avoid weight gain especially in dogs that have diabetes. Brown rice is harder to digest.
- Milk – yes If your dog can tolerate it but only in very little quantities as most dogs (and humans) are lactose intolerant. Start slow.
- Sweet Potatoes – Contain Vitamin C, A, Iron, Calcium and Potassium and lots of fiber and low in fat. It is good for your dog’s eyes, nerves, bones, skin and muscles. Must be given in moderation especially in dogs that have Diabetes.
- Oatmeal – yes but must be plain and without sugar. It is a good source of fiber. Limit to once or twice a week. Too much can cause Diarrhea.
- Honey – Honey can be given in small quantities as it contains a high amount of sugar. Do not give to dogs under 1 year old to prevent Botulism poisoning. Limit to 1 table spoon per day for large dogs and half a teaspoon for medium to smaller dogs. Manuka honey is particularly healthy for dogs.
- Pasta – Like rice and bread, Pasta contains mostly empty calories. It can be given to dogs in moderation but must not be a regular part of his diet and must always be given plain.
- Corn – The kernels contain antioxidants and protein and can be given occasionally. However, never give corn on the cob. If your dog accidentally swallows the corn cob, it may cause an obstruction in the gut. Call your vet ASAP.
- Broccoli – can be given raw or cooked. Broccoli must be given in moderation because too much may cause digestive upset.
- Popcorn – Must be given plain without salt or butter. Make sure all the kernels are popped because un-popped kernels can damage teeth.
- Tomato – can be given as an occasional treat but it must be ripe and not too much because tomatoes are naturally acidic. Unripe tomatoes contain Tomatine which can be harmful.
- Carrots – Contains Vitamin A and fiber among many others. Carrots are safe but have to be cut in small pieces to prevent choking. Large frozen carrots can be used as chew toys and can help with dental health.
- Lettuce – must be given in moderation. Too much can cause diarrhea.
- Asparagus – Must be cooked. The stiff stalks can be a choking hazard.
- Cauliflower – Must be given in moderation. Too much can cause digestive upset.
- Zucchini – Must be given plain.
- Bell Peppers – All non spicy bell peppers can be given especially red which is the most nutritious.
- Watermelon – Seeds can cause an obstruction in the gut and must be removed. The rind may cause gastrointestinal upset. You can cut them in pieces and freeze them as a treat
- Oranges – May cause stomach upset due to being acidic. It is also high in sugar. Give in moderation.
- Mango – Contains lot of fiber. The skin and pit must be removed to prevent choking.
- Cherries – Must remove pits to prevent choking.
- Pineapples – Give in moderation. Too much can cause vomiting and diarrhea
- Blueberries – Contain lots of fiber, vitamin C and are naturally now in sugar and calories. Can also be frozen and given as a treat
- Blackberries – Can be given fresh or frozen. It also contains lots of vitamins and minerals.
- Celery – Contains vitamin K, B6, potassium which is good for blood clotting and bone health. It is approximately 95% water. Must be given in moderation. Too much can cause excessive urination. Cut it in small pieces to prevent choking.
- Banana – High in potassium, B6 and Vitamin C. Bananas are high in sugar and must be given in moderation
- Strawberries – contain vitamin C, magnesium, B1, B6, potassium and Iodine. Strawberries are best enjoyed in moderation as it also contains high amount of sugar. Whenever possible, go for organic because strawberries are one of the most pesticide laden fruits.
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Always start slow when introducing a new food and monitor for any reactions. Remember, not all foods are safe for dogs. When in doubt, ask your vet.
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All information in this article is for educational purposes only and is not meant to replace your veterinarian’s advice