While we never want to get in the habit of feeding our dogs too many treats, sometimes those sad, little, puppy-dog eyes are too much to handle and can start pulling at your heartstrings. After all, they just want a little taste of whatever that yumminess is that they’re smelling. The poor things eat the same thing for every meal. Can you imagine?
So, go ahead and give them a little treat every now and then, just not from the dinner table, please. And, make sure that what you are giving them is safe for them to eat.
Here is a list of some of the foods that are healthy for them to have a taste of. We’ve even separated them into categories for easier reference.
Dogs especially love anything that crunches. And, carrots fit the bill. They can enjoy them raw or cooked. If you give them raw carrots, make sure to cut them in bite-size pieces to prevent choking. They’re low in calories, loaded with fiber, and packed with tons of vitamins and minerals. Carrots are even good for their teeth.
It’s mostly comprised of water, along with vitamins A, C, and K, making it a great low-calorie snack.
Lettuce has that crunch factor going for it, and dogs love it. It also has beta-carotene, which improves eyesight, prevents cancer, and is good for bone development. Lettuce is also a good source of fiber, aiding indigestion. Make sure that the lettuce is clean and cut into bite-sized pieces to avoid a choking hazard.
It’s actually in a lot of dog foods already, and for good reason. It’s high in protein, which your dog’s body craves, as well as good carbohydrates and fiber, which help with digestion. Make sure that they don’t get a hold of the corncobs, though. The cobs will break into pieces, causing a possible choking hazard or other internal issues. So, they can indulge a little. Just hold the salt and butter.
Perfectly okay for dogs to eat, you’ll actually notice them incorporated in a lot of different dog foods. Rich in vitamin B, phosphorous, and potassium, they’re also a great source of dietary fiber. Sugar snap peas will make the best snack. They can even eat the pod. Fresh or frozen peas are fine. But, avoid the canned peas.
There will be extra sodium and other preservatives that won’t agree with your little friends digestion system.
It’s high in fiber and vitamin C. It’s also low in fat. It does contain isothiocyanates, which have both good and bad qualities. It is an anti-inflammatory and can slow the growth of cancer cells. But, it can irritate your dog’s digestive system if they eat too much. So, a little nibble or scrap is good for them. Just don’t let them overdo it.
As long as they’re cooked, a few plain potatoes are fine for your dog. But, they are high in carbohydrates, which won’t be good for your pup’s waistline. And, raw potatoes should be avoided. They can cause gas and other intestinal issues.
They will love the sweet taste as an occasional treat.
They’re low in fat and high in fiber, aiding in digestion. Sweet potatoes are also full of vitamins B6, C, and A, which is good for your dog’s immune system and their eyes, as well as manganese.
Too much vitamin A can cause bone and muscle issues. So, just a taste every now and then.
Dogs can eat mushrooms purchased from your local grocer. But, avoid wild mushrooms, as some of them can be toxic. There aren’t really any health benefits gained by your dog eating mushrooms. But, a nibble will be okay for them.
As with most foods that you feed your dogs, you should always avoid processed items because of added preservatives and sugars. But, dogs love the sweet crunch of fresh pineapple. And, it’s packed with plenty of healthy vitamin C, as well as bromelain, niacin, thiamine, vitamin B6, riboflavin, and folate. It can even prevent cancer.
Pineapple is naturally high in sugar, so maybe just a bite or two will be okay for them.
Try them frozen for an especially sweet, crunchy treat. Blueberries are naturally low in calories, making them great for snacks and training rewards.
They’re rich in antioxidants, which can help with blood circulation and boosts the overall immune system. They’re also high in fiber, aiding in digestion, and a good source of vitamin C. Blueberries are a perfect snack that both you and your furry friend can enjoy together.
Here’s another one of nature’s little tidbits that your dog will enjoy, and it’s good for them. They’re low in calories, packed with antioxidants, and contain vitamins A, B, C, and E.
Blackberries are also another great source of fiber, to aid with your dog’s digestion. You can even feed them to your little friend as a frozen, crunchy treat.
They can, and will, certainly eat them. You will need to be careful with the apple core. The seeds have a trace amount of cyanide, which can be harmful to them. But, the meat of the apple is packed with good stuff. Not only will they love crunching on the slices, they will also be getting a good dose of both vitamins A and C, as well as plenty of fiber.
We’ll classify it as a fruit, although it could also be considered a nut or a seed. In any case, both the meat and the oil are safe for your dog to eat. The oil, is small doses, can even promote a healthy coat. It is high in fat and calories, so just a little bit here and there is okay.
While they won’t harm your dog, they are high in sugar. But, an occasional treat will give them potassium, manganese, biotin, copper and both vitamins B6 and C. The fiber is also good for digestion. So, a bite is okay just to get their tail wagging.
They’re almost entirely made of fiber and vitamin C, so your little pooch can indulge in a few slices with you. Avoid the peels, though. They are difficult to digest.
Some dogs can handle dairy products just fine, and some will have digestive issues. It’s best to test the waters with a little taste of cheese or milk and see if they have any issues. Most dogs will be able to handle a little dairy, and cheese is a great place to hide any medicine that they may need.
They can have a taste of your morning oatmeal, as long as there aren’t any extra flavors added.
Maple syrup and brown sugar might not be the best idea, although they would absolutely love it! Plain cooked oatmeal is naturally low in saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium. It’s also loaded with phosphorous, selenium, manganese, and is high in dietary fiber. It is a little on the fattening side of the spectrum, so just a taste is good.
It is just as healthy for dogs as it is for us. Brown rice has a little more fiber than white rice, which will help the digestive system.
White rice can help your little guy with an upset stomach. It’s low in both fat and sodium and can lower cholesterol levels. And, it’s rich in niacin, iron, thiamine, riboflavin, calcium, and vitamin D. You might want to mix it with a little chicken, as the bland flavor may not appeal to your dog.
Not only do dogs love eggs, but they are good for them. High in protein, they’re a great source of riboflavin and selenium, as well being packed with vitamins and minerals.
Make sure to only give them cooked eggs. Dogs won’t be affected by Salmonella in the same way that we are, but they can spread the bacteria to humans. And, you don’t want to overdo it. Too much cholesterol isn’t good for their hearts either.
Salmon is high in Omega-3 fatty acids. These fats can help with inflammation as well as keeping their coat and skin soft and healthy. They’re also beneficial for dogs dealing with canine arthritis. It has to be boneless and thoroughly cooked, as there are parasites in raw salmon that can be fatal for dogs.
Of course, they can eat chicken. It’s actually one of the main ingredients in most dog foods because of its flavor and nutritional value.
It’s a great source of vitamin B6, phosphorous, niacin, and selenium. It’s also naturally low in sodium, and high in protein. Just make sure that the chicken is fully cooked. And, they can never have chicken bones. They will splinter easily and can cause choking or other internal damage.
The smell of cooked pork will drive them crazy, that’s for sure. They can have a nibble of unseasoned pork.
However, bacon and other processed pork products should be avoided because of the high salt content. Pork is a great source of protein, but it is also heavy with rich fats that are difficult for your dog to digest. So, only feed them cooked pork for their occasional treat. And, the bones are a no-no. They splinter just like chicken bones. Eating raw pork can give them trichinosis, just like us.
Carnivores by nature, beef may be one of their favorites. It’s already incorporated in many dog foods.
If you’re giving them an extra meaty treat, aim for the leaner cuts. The extra fat and marbling in some cuts won’t be good for their digestive system. You can let your dog chew on raw beef bones, as long as they aren’t broken or cut. Any cooked bones can splinter causing choking issues.
Cooked shrimp are okay for your dog to enjoy a taste of. Make sure the shell is removed, as it can cause choking.
Raw shrimp should never be eaten because of the bacterial content that the cooking process kills. When cooked properly, shrimp in a great source of vitamin B12 and selenium. It’s also high in protein. Unfortunately, it’s also high in cholesterol, so just a taste.
They can eat peanut butter, but there are some things to look out for.
Moderation is a must as peanuts are very high in fat. And, processed peanut butter may have additives that can upset your dog’s stomach. But, they absolutely love it! So, if you must let them indulge, it’s best to only let them have a taste of organic, salt-free peanut butter. Or, you could make your own.
As long as the popcorn has no butter or salt and is air-popped, they can have just a piece or two. Of course, they’ll love it! But, the kernels will get stuck in their teeth just like in yours.
Of course, there are a lot more of our foods that your dog can indulge in safely. Just always remember to keep them on their regular diet and limit how many snacks that you give them. A nibble or two of our food won’t hurt them. And, you get to be a part of their happy dance when you treat them to those morsels of heaven that they’re craving.