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Posted on Wednesday, April 4th, 2012

Nutritional “People Food” for Pets

Dog Begging for Table People Food

As dog owners, we’re frequently told by others that we should avoid giving “people food” to our pets. The most common reasons are attributed to making our dogs sick or overweight. This is usually the case when dog owners make a habit out of feeding their dog table scraps. We usually hear what not to feed our dogs, but did you know that there are actually some human foods that can be safely included in their diets that can give a nutritional boost and add variety to their bowl?

Yogurt
Yogurt can be a great source of calcium and protein for dogs. It’s important to choose one that has live active bacteria and no artificial sweeteners or sugars. The bacteria can act as a probiotic. Try to stick with fat-free yogurts if your dog already has “a little extra to love.”

Green Beans
Green beans are a good source of fiber, vitamin K, vitamin C, and manganese for your dog. Replacing some of your dog’s regular food with green beans is a great way to help an overweight dog drop some pounds. Feeding your dog green beans are a nutritional low calorie way to fill up your dog’s tummy and just help maintain a healthy weight. Most dogs seem to enjoy frozen green beans as well!

Salmon
This fish is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids which can help support your dog’s immune system. It has also proven to be beneficial for skin and coat health. Make sure the salmon is cooked before serving, as raw salmon can be a carrier for a parasite harmful to dogs.

Berries
Blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, huckleberries, or raspberries are just as good for your dog as they are for you. They offer healthy free-radical-fighting antioxidants! Try serving these frozen, too.

Eggs
These are a great source of digestible protein, riboflavin, and selenium for dogs. These can be a very healthy treat you can use for training! Make sure to use cooked whole eggs only.

Peanut Butter
Most dog owners are aware peanut butter is safe for dogs. Peanuts don’t seem to cause allergies likes they do in people. This has been a great way for pet parents to sneak their dogs any medication they may require.

Keep in mind that any new foods you give your dog will often result in more begging. Once you introduce your dog to something new they will likely always want some of yours whenever you eat it in the future.

Most veterinarians recommend making sure that the additions made to your dog’s meals don’t comprise more than 25 percent of their weekly caloric requirement. Try to make conscious decisions when feeding your dog human foods

What are some of your dog’s favorite people food? Do you use it as a treat or routinely part of their diet?

Here are some of the most popular safe human foods that dog owners routinely give their dogs:

  • Apples (no seeds)
  • Applesauce
  • Apricots (no pits)
  • Baby food (all-natural)
  • Beef (scraps)
  • Berries (fresh and frozen)
  • Bouillon
  • Bran cereal
  • Bread (without raisins or nuts)
  • Broccoli (raw)
  • Carrots
  • Cashews
  • Cauliflower (raw)
  • Celery
  • Cheerios
  • Cheese (American, cheddar)
  • Cheese Wiz
  • Chicken (cooked, no bones or skin)
  • Chicken broth
  • Cottage cheese
  • Cream cheese
  • Croutons (plain)
  • Eggs (cooked)
  • Flax seed (ground or oil)
  • Ginger
  • Green beans (canned, no salt)
  • Honey
  • Melons
  • Mint (helps with bad breath)
  • Nectarines (no pits)
  • Oatmeal
  • Orange slices (no rinds)
  • Organ meats (giblets, liver, tongue, heart, gizzards
  • Parsley
  • Pasta noodles (cooked)
  • Peaches
  • Peanut butter (creamy or chunky, preferably all-natural)
  • Peas
  • Pineapple (fresh or frozen)
  • Popcorn (no salt, toppings or kernals)
  • Potatoes (mashed, no butter, skin or green parts)
  • Pumpkin (canned)
  • Rice (cooked)
  • Rice cakes
  • Squash
  • Sunflower seeds (unsalted)
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Tomatoes (no greens or stems)
  • Tuna (and the juice from canned tuna)
  • Turkey (cooked, no bones or skin)
  • Yogurt (plain, lowfat, unflavored, unsweetened)