!Header Logo

Richmond Veterinary Clinic

!Call Today!

Tips On Giving Your Dog Treats

February 15 2020

There’s a pretty big doggy holiday coming up soon. February 23rd is National Dog Biscuit Awareness Day! If there’s one thing we know for sure about Man’s Best Friend, it’s that he really, really, really likes treats. (He’s also very fond of belly rubs and car rides, but that’s another topic.) Treats are a great way to get your canine buddy’s tail going, and brighten up his day a bit. However, there are some things to keep in mind when giving Fido his snacks. In this article, a McHenry, IL vet offers tips on giving your pup treats.

Choose Healthy Options

Plain, cooked meat, fish, or poultry is always fine. Fido can also enjoy some shredded deli meat, or a bit of sodium-free broth.

Buy Wisely

Get into the habit of reading labels. Opt for products that use mostly meat, fish, and/or chicken, and don’t have a huge list of unidentifiable ingredients.

Limit Fatty Foods

If Fido could name his favorite things, bacon and sausage would definitely be on that list, along with walks, ear scritches, playtime, toys, and comfy beds. However, too much fat isn’t good for dogs. Limit your furry pal’s intake of fatty foods.

Make Fido Work

One of the many things we love about our canine companions is the fact that they really do try to please their owners. Have Fido do a trick for his treat! This is a great way to reinforce your pet’s training, and boost his confidence.

Homemade Goodies

If you like, you can make your furry friend’s snacks. The ingredients listed above are all safe. You can customize Fido’s biscuits by adding things like meat, cheese, bacon bits, bacon grease, safe fruits and veggies, eggs, liver powder, and/or wheat germ oil. Look online for recipe ideas.

Avoid Dangerous Foods

Your pooch would happily consume anything you offer him, but be careful. Some of our favorite foods are toxic to Fido! Never give your canine companion anything that contains garlic, onions, scallions, or chives; grapes, currants, and raisins; chocolate; caffeine; alcohol; nuts; mushroom; pitted fruits; or raw meat, dough, or yeast. You’ll also want to avoid giving your four-legged friend foods that are high in salt, sugar, or fat, as well as anything that contains xylitol.

Our Advice on Tips On Giving Your Dog Treats in 2024

What makes February 23rd a significant day for dog owners?

February 23rd is celebrated as National Dog Biscuit Awareness Day, marking a special occasion for dog owners to acknowledge the joy and love the treats bring to their canine companions. This day emphasizes the importance of choosing healthy, nutritious snacks for dogs, promoting their well-being and happiness. This day serves as a chance for pet owners to educate themselves on the contents of dog biscuits, ensuring they offer their four-legged companions snacks that are delightful and conducive to their health and nutritional needs.

What are some healthy treat options for dogs?

Healthy treat options for dogs include plain, cooked meats like chicken, turkey, or beef, which are high in protein and free from added seasonings. Fresh carrots, green beans, and pumpkin can offer low-calorie, nutrient-rich alternatives. Small pieces of apple (without seeds) or blueberries are great for a sweet, antioxidant-rich snack. Opting for commercial treats, look for those with simple, recognizable ingredients, focusing on whole foods and avoiding additives. These healthy choices can satisfy a dog’s taste buds while contributing to their well-being.

What are some safe ingredients for homemade dog treats?

Safe ingredients for homemade dog treats include cooked lean meats like chicken or beef, plain cooked fish, and healthy grains such as rice or oats. Vegetables like carrots, peas, and sweet potatoes provide fiber and vitamins, while fruits like apples (without seeds) and bananas offer natural sweetness. Ingredients like pumpkin and plain yogurt can aid digestion. Avoid toxic foods like onions, garlic, chocolate, grapes, and xylitol. Using these safe ingredients creates nutritious, tasty treats that dogs will love.

What are the dangers of feeding dogs certain human foods, and which should be avoided?

Feeding dogs certain human foods can pose serious health risks, including toxicity and digestive issues. Foods to avoid include chocolate, caffeine, and alcohol, which are toxic; grapes, raisins, and currants that can cause kidney failure; onions, garlic, and chives, leading to blood cell damage; and xylitol, an artificial sweetener causing a rapid insulin release. Avocado, nuts, especially macadamia nuts, and bones can also be harmful, causing obstruction or injury. High-fat, salty, or sugary foods should be avoided to prevent obesity and related health problems. Always prioritize dog-safe foods to ensure their health and safety.

Why should dog owners avoid giving their pets foods high in salt, sugar, fat, or xylitol?

Dog owners should avoid giving their pets foods high in salt, sugar, fat, or xylitol due to the potential health risks of these ingredients. High salt intake can lead to sodium ion poisoning, causing symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, and seizures. Sugary foods contribute to obesity, dental problems, and diabetes. Excessive fat can trigger pancreatitis, a painful and potentially life-threatening condition. Xylitol, an artificial sweetener, is highly toxic to dogs, leading to rapid insulin release, hypoglycemia, liver failure, and even death. Prioritizing a balanced, species-appropriate diet is crucial for a dog’s health and well-being.

Do you have any questions or concerns about your dog’s diet? Call us, your local McHenry, IL pet clinic, today!