Dog treats are a great way to show your pup some love and reward them for good behavior. However, some treats might not be as safe as they seem. Whether homemade or store-bought, there are sure treats you should avoid giving your dog so it can stay happy and healthy.
Unsafe Food for Dogs
Let’s take a look at the unsafe treats you should steer clear of when treating your pup.
Chocolate is one of the most dangerous foods for dogs due to its high levels of caffeine and theobromine, which is toxic for dogs. Even a tiny piece can cause vomiting, diarrhea, tremors, seizures, and even death if left untreated.
Dark chocolate is especially dangerous because it contains more toxins than milk chocolate. If your dog has ingested any chocolate, contact your veterinarian immediately.
Grapes & Raisins
Grapes and raisins have been known to cause kidney failure in dogs if consumed in large amounts. While the exact reason is unknown, it’s best to avoid these snacks altogether since there’s no way to know how much would be too much for your pup’s body weight. Symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain.
If you notice any of these signs after feeding grapes or raisins to your dog, call your vet immediately!
Onions & Garlic
Onions and garlic can cause anemia in dogs when eaten raw or cooked in large quantities over time due to their high levels of thiosulfate content. These vegetables also contain substances that could be toxic for some pets (particularly cats).
Keep onions and garlic away from all pets—and stick with pet-safe vegetables like celery and carrots instead!
Keep your dog away from xylitol. Often found in sugar-free gums and candies, this sweetener can trigger insulin release in dogs, leading to dangerously low blood sugar levels. Severe cases may result in liver failure. Always check the labels of sugar-free products and keep them out of your dog’s reach.
Avoid giving your dog fatty foods. Rich, greasy treats can cause pancreatitis, a condition that inflames the pancreas and causes abdominal pain, vomiting, and dehydration. Stick to lean, healthy snacks instead to prevent this painful condition.
Never feed your dog cooked bones. They can easily splinter, risking blockages or tears in the digestive system, and pose a choking hazard. For your dog’s safety and enjoyment, opt for bones designed explicitly for canine dental health.
Consider that some dogs are lactose intolerant. Dairy products can cause digestive upset, including diarrhea and stomach pain. If you want to treat your dog, it’s best to choose lactose-free options or skip dairy altogether.
Alcohol and Caffeine
Ensure alcohol and caffeine are nowhere within your dog’s reach. These substances can be toxic, causing symptoms like vomiting, agitation, and heart palpitations. A dog’s liver cannot process alcohol, and caffeine can be lethal even in small quantities.
Be aware that macadamia nuts are toxic to dogs. Even a tiny amount can cause weakness, depression, vomiting, tremors, and hyperthermia. Always store these nuts and foods containing them securely away from curious paws.
Safe Treat Alternatives
Choose safe and healthy alternatives for rewarding your dog. Crunchy baby carrots, apple slices (without seeds), and plain-boiled chicken are nutritious options that most dogs love. Look for treats formulated specifically for dogs, ensuring they are free from harmful ingredients and additives. These satisfy your dog’s urge to chew and benefit their teeth and digestion.
Always have your vet’s number and the Pet Poison Helpline at hand. In case your dog ingests something potentially toxic, immediate action is crucial. Having these contacts accessible can make all the difference during an emergency, ensuring you can quickly get expert guidance and help your dog receive prompt care.
It’s important to remember that not all treats are created equal regarding what’s safe for our furry friends—some human foods pose severe risks if ingested by our four-legged pals! By avoiding these everyday ingredients, you can keep your pup safe from potential health risks associated with eating them.
Research before feeding something new, and always consult a veterinarian if needed! With this knowledge under our belt, let’s get treatin’ safely!