Table scraps aren’t all bad, however most things people feed their pets off their plate are not healthy for them. With the holidays right around the corner, it’s great to refresh your memory on appropriate table scraps they CAN and CAN’t Eat. A piece of roasted turkey or two isn’t bad, but too much cooked meat can cause the digestive system to back up causing intenstine issues and inviting bacteria— no good! The key is knowing what is ok and what isn’t.
1. First off know what is not ok.
Dogs absolutely can not have onions, garlic, grapes (raisens), chocolate, or caffine. These foods are toxic and while feeding these things may not produce visible damage to your pet they can have serious effects on your pets insides especially their liver. Dogs also should never be given raw meat, heavily seasoned or spicy foods, processed foods, anything containing growth horomones (like lunch meat), sugary foods and candy, cheese, food that is fatty or cooked in oil, grease, or butter. Salty foods are also off limits. Also some dogs have actual food alergies. Signs of an alergic reaction include but are not limited to vomiting, loose stool, swelling, puffiness or bloating, itching, and exsessive thrist or water consumption.
2. So now that we know what isn’t ok that brings us to what is ok.
Dogs can have most fruits, veggies, and nuts. Some vets actually reccomend these rather than conventional dog treats. Some examples of things my dogs go crazy for are- apple slices (apple cores are off limits as the seeds contain arsenic), bananas, blue berries, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, celery, cherries (pitted), corn, green beans, lettuce, peanuts (unsalted), plain popcorn, raw potatoes, potatoe skins, raspberries, rice (cooked, plain), strawberries, tomatoes, and Zucchini.
3. Know that we have an idea of what’s ok and what isn’t how do you work these types of things in.
Dogs adjust best to this kind of treat if they’re given it from a young age. Most puppies will happily eat anything given to them. Older dogs that are used to getting lunch meat and cheese will be less interested in fruits and veggies however most all dogs will be willing to eat atleast some of the healier table scrap options. If your dog does not accept healthier scraps at first do not fall back into the habbit of giving them unhealthy treats. In time the “take it or leave it” aproach will work. Over time even picky eaters can learn to enjoy healthier options because a begging dog is not just looking for food but also attention. Rember to use posative encouragement.
4. Once your dog is eating healthy feel free to include them in helping you prepare food.
My dog is an huge help in the kitchen. As I chop fruits and veggies my little helper sits patiently at my feet waiting for pieces of veggies and fruit that humans don’t normally eat, like celery hearts, the outter peeling of carrots, potatoe skins, wilted lettuce, and the top stem portion of some veggies. He saves me time by eliminating most of my trips from the cutting board to the trash can and by making a habbit of letting him “help” it cuts down on the ammount of food that’s wasted or thrown away.
5. The last step, have fun!
Healthier eating habbits between you and your pet can promote a longer healthier and happier life for both of you.
This article was adapted from ehow.com.