Sharing food is a bonding experience. It is something we do as humans with each other as well as with the pets we love. However, human and canine biology are very different and some food that is beneficial to us can be fatal to our canine companions. Here are two lists of food, one that is good for your puppy and the other that is not. Because the wrong food can have such devastating consequences, we will begin with the negative list.
What to Avoid
Most lists will name individual foods to avoid. Here, we give you 7 ingredients and foods, instead. With this information, there is no need to memorize long lists – simply watch out for these danger signs.
Of course, always be safe with up to date health checks & vaccinations for your puppy.
Caffeine is most often associated with coffee but it is also can be found in
- chocolate (including chocolate drinks)
- energy drinks like Red Bull
Caffeine poisoning causes symptoms like muscle tremors, heart palpitations, rapid breathing, and even bleeding.
Xylitol is an artificial sweetener that can be found in a range of treats and candies that we love. It is almost always used in:
- chewing gum
- baked treats
- diet food
- toothpaste (!)
Be especially careful if you have ‘diet’-labeled food. The ‘lite’ version of food like peanut butter, which is otherwise beneficial for your puppy, often contains xylitol.
This chemical triggers the release of insulin in puppies and can also lead to liver failure. The symptoms include lethargy, vomiting, and loss of coordination.
Puppies are seldom lactose intolerant but their bodies lack a tiny enzyme that processes dairy. Avoid:
- ice cream
They can cause diarrhea and vomiting and may also lead to gastrointestinal problems.
Salmonella and E.coli poisoning in puppies can often be traced back to raw meat, raw fish and raw eggs. They can be added to your puppy’s diet but only with extreme care. Avoid all three to be safe.
Sugary treats are just as bad for your puppy as they are for you. Excessive sugar intake leads to tooth decay, diabetes, and obesity. Moderation is the key here.
Like sugar, excessive salt intake has similar effects on puppies and humans. However, your pup’s capacity for salt is much lower than yours. These are the most common culprits in American households:
Salt triggers thirst and dogs have a tendency to drink excess water in response, and this can be fatal.
Onion and Garlic
Besides bad breath, these ingredients can trigger more serious issues like weakness, vomiting, and breathlessness. Excessive intake can cause anemia which can be deadly.
What to Add to Your Puppy’s Diet
Oatmeal – This is a great source of fiber and especially good if your puppy experiences bowel irregularity. Serve it cooked but don’t add salt or sugar.
Peanut butter – This is a puppy favorite and a great source of protein and healthy fats. Ensure that the brand does not include xylitol or excess salt.
Yogurt – Another great food for puppy gut health, yogurt is high in calcium and protein. Avoid ‘lite’ brands that contain artificial sweeteners like xylitol.
Broccoli – Great for puppies and humans alike, broccoli is packed with a range of vitamins. However, take care not to let it compose more than 10% of your puppy’s diet to avoid bowel irritation.
Carrots – High in fiber and vitamin content, low in calories, carrots are the ideal snacking option for your puppy. Baby carrots may work best for the little fellow’s tiny jaws.
Apple – Apples are rich in Vitamin A and C, which are great for a growing puppy’s overall health. Just remember to remove the core and seeds to prevent choking; apple slices may be the best answer.
Children are especially eager to share their treats. French Bulldogs, Yorkshire Terriers, Goldendoodle, Pembroke Welsh Corgis, Boxers, Havanese, and Shih Tzu puppies may be especially hard to resist.
If you have children in the house, make it clear which foods can cause harm to your puppy. Monitor their interactions at mealtimes and at treat time.
*There are lots of foods that are good and bad for your puppy. Always consult your Veterinarian before feeding human foods and/or changing diets. As there are many variables in terms of digestion, allergies. Veterinarians can give you breed specific do’s or don’ts.