Human Food For Dogs – Is It Safe?
Most dog owners form a strong bond with their pet, and take every measure to ensure that their dog feels like it is a part of the family. However, a recent topic that has been discussed among many pet care experts is if human food scraps for dogs is safe. The answer to this question isn’t a simple “yes” or “no”, since it depends on the type of food, and type of dog. However, there is some general information about human food that every dog owner should be familiar with, in order to ensure that the proper steps are taken to ensure their dog’s good health.
A common problem among dogs that are fed table scraps on a regular basis is obesity. Most humans consume a high-carbohydrate, high-sugar diet that includes many different processed ingredients. Because of this, it is estimated that approximately 45% of the pets in the United States are currently obese. Diet plays a huge role in pet obesity, since many pets have different nutritional requirements than humans do. Because of this, it’s possible that a dog that is constantly fed human food can eventually become obese.
Pancreatitis is a condition in which the pancreas of a dog becomes inflamed to the point where it no longer functions normally. In dogs, this health condition can be caused by a one-time ingestion of a high-fat meal, or ingestion of a high-fat diet over a long period of time. Many human table scraps (chicken skin, leftover meat, bacon grease) are extremely high in fat, though some people choose to feed these foods to their dogs. It’s essential that you remember that pancreatitis is a sometimes irreversible condition, which can be caused by your dog only eating a high-fat meal once. Avoid giving your dog high—fat human foods at all costs.
SAFE HUMAN FOODS FOR DOGS?
In general, it is best to use common sense when feeding your dog human food. Dogs are not designed to consume a high percentage of simple carbohydrates, such as those found in white flour, white rice and pastries. In addition to this, it’s best to avoid feeding your dog any food substance that contains artificial colors, artificial flavors, chemical preservatives, steroids or artificial growth hormones. This eliminates a majority of human food, and only leaves some food substances. In addition to this, there are many human foods (garlic, onions, raisins, avocados, chocolate) that can potentially cause serious health problems in dogs.
SHOULD I AVOID FEEDING MY DOG HUMAN FOOD?
It’s generally best to avoid feeding your dog human food on a regular basis. Because of the ingredients that can be toxic to your dog, as well as the chance of your dog developing a health condition, it’s advised that you stick to your dog’s regular diet. While it is possible to give your dog a “treat” (such as a small cube of cooked, deboned chicken or steak) every so often, it’s best to avoid feeding your dog human foods if they are being fed a commercial diet.
If you do decide to feed your dog human food, the key is to make sure that you are not over-feeding your dog, and the foods that you give them are unrefined whole foods that contain no preservatives etc.
Do you feed your dog anything other than commercial dog food? Tell us your thoughts on feeding your dog human food…