Dogs and cats should maintain a diet of specifically formulated food that is created for their health and wellness in regards to diet and allergy needs. There has been a rise in pet owners feeding their beloved animals’ raw diets or incorporating human food. Human food must be monitored closely since some is toxic to pets. Owners must know the symptoms of pet toxicity before they incorporate human food into their pets’ diet.
This safe list is a good starting point for pet owners. Keep in mind that if your pet has a specific health condition (i.e., diabetes or kidney issues), please consult with your veterinarian prior to incorporating any new foods into your pet’s diet:
1. Skinless chicken
Skinless chicken is a healthy treat to a pet’s meals because it promotes bone health. The skinless chicken is a great source of amino acids and glucosamine. Many veterinarians will recommend adding it to a dog or cats diet once or twice weekly. Your pets vet will be able to let you know how much is appropriate for their weight and age. Skinless chicken is also a very healthy option to use as a training treat.
Eggs offer quite a few health benefits for pets. They are commonly given to aid in upset stomachs. Additionally, eggs are full of fatty acids and amino acids. Pets can eat eggs either boiled or cooked but they should not be fried in grease. Grease is unhealthy for pets. Treats should only make up about 10% of your pets’ diet and eggs are roughly 70 calories each so be sure to do the math and not over-indulge your pet with eggs. When in doubt, call your vet and they’ll be able to tell you how much is appropriate per your pets’ weight.
Fish is full of omega-3 fatty acids and a great source of protein for dogs and cats. Many manufactured pet foods already contain some form of fish and older dogs are often given fish oil supplements to help with joint pain and movement. Fish is known for its anti-inflammatory properties.
Cucumbers are very low in sodium and are very low calorie. These are crunchy and delicious and a great alternative to manufactured dog biscuits. Cucumbers only have about 8 calories per half cup. This low calorie snack extends training and reward sessions due to the amount you can safely feed your pet without impacting their diet negatively. Cucumbers are also 98% water which makes them refreshing treat options for hot days.
Broccoli is a low fat treat that can be fed cooked or raw. It is high in fiber and vitamin C and makes a great addition to kibble or can be used as a training snack.
Incorporating these safe and healthy snacks to your pet’s diet will allow your beloved furry family member to safely enjoy human foods without the fear of toxicity. Always avoid grapes, raisins, coffee, alcohol and chocolate and ask your vet for a printed list of foods that are deemed safe specifically for your pet.