Sharing your food with your pet can be tempting. While sitting and watching TV, it’s natural to feel like feeding your dog a couple of fries or onion rings. At the dinner table, you may want to share your food with your pet as well. But can dogs eat human food? As a responsible dog owner, you should be aware of the different kinds of food your dog can and cannot eat. The good news is that there are many human foods that dog can eat.
Vegetables are safe, healthy, and good for you, and the same applies to dogs too. The challenge, however, is being aware of what vegetables dogs can eat.
It’s a yes for these tiny greens. You can feed your dog broccoli either raw or steamed. However, it should not contain oil, salt, or seasoning.
Broccoli is a low-calorie vegetable that is made up of plenty of nutrients. It’s a healthy treat for your dog because it’s rich in Vitamins C and K and potassium, which help support your canine’s heart, immune system, and bone density.
However, you must ensure that you feed your dog broccoli in moderation because it contains isothiocyanates that can irritate its digestive system.
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Carrots are a healthy treat for your dog. Dogs enjoy eating carrots because of their flavor and crunchy nature.
The entire carrot from its leafy green top to its orange point is jam-packed with beta-carotene, potassium, Vitamin A, and other nutrients that supplement your dog’s nutritional needs.
You can feed your dog carrots either cooked or raw and it is a superfood that is also one of the best foods for dogs. However, you need to make sure that you either grate the carrots or cut them into smaller pieces to prevent possible choking.
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This starchy root vegetable also gets a thumbs-up as human food dogs can eat. Sweet potatoes are full of Vitamin A that improves your dog’s immune system and eye health. The Vitamin A content in sweet potatoes also helps your dog develop a healthier coat and stronger muscles. Sweet potato is also one of the best superfoods you can feed your dog.
Sweet potatoes are a rich source of potassium, Vitamins A, B6, and C, calcium, and iron, and a single serving of boiled sweet potato is a highly nutritious treat for your pet. This is a healthy and organic addition to your dog’s meal if they suffer from constipation or diarrhea.
Potatoes are safe for dogs. However, you should not feed your dog potatoes in the form of french fries, chips, or wedges. It should ideally be boiled or baked and without any salt, or seasoning.
If you feed your dog potatoes, you must ensure that they’re cooked because potatoes can be harmful if consumed raw. This is primarily because of the compound solanine found in them. Cooking removes the solanine content in potatoes making them safe for consumption by dogs.
Potatoes are also carbohydrate-rich. Therefore, like most human foods served to dogs, you should only feed it in small portions because otherwise, it could cause obesity.
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Although classified as vegetables, mushrooms are safe for your dog.
Commercial and store-bought mushrooms like portobello and button mushrooms make fantastic dog snacks. However, adding other ingredients to them like onions or garlic, make mushrooms toxic. Instead, feed your pet raw mushrooms.
Mushrooms have zero fat and contain lots of antioxidants that boost your dog’s immune system. Although they lack flavor, they’re still a healthy treat.
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Celery is low in fat, rich in fiber, folate, Vitamins A, C, K, manganese, and potassium. When feeding your dog celery, ensure that you cut it into bite-size portions, so it doesn’t become a choking hazard.
Not all dogs enjoy this as a snack or treat, but some dogs like it more than others.
What’s excellent about celery is that it’s healthy and also improves your dog’s breathing.
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Another healthy human food for dogs is pumpkin. It is rich in beta-carotene, fiber, zinc, iron, and Vitamins A, C, and E.
Apart from being a delicious treat for your dog, pumpkin is also known to aid the gastrointestinal tract and improve digestion. The best way to serve your dog pumpkin is to feed it raw with no additives.
Fresh or canned pumpkin can be a good addition to your dog’s diet to manage its weight. Pumpkins are both low-calorie and low-fat but have enough fiber and protein to make your dog feel full.
Green beans can be your dog’s additional source of iron, calcium, protein, and Vitamin K. They are healthy vegetables that are safe to feed your pet. They’re also rich in fiber, so if your dog needs to lose a couple of pounds, green beans could make for a great healthy snack.
You can feed your dog all types of green beans. They can be raw, chopped, canned, or steamed as long as they don’t contain seasoning, salt, or additives.
Dogs love green beans, and they’re also very healthy and nutritious.
Another veggie that you can feed your dog is Brussel sprouts. It is an adequate source of antioxidants and fiber. It also helps cure inflammation in your dog’s system and also improve its blood circulation. It also cleans the colon and helps remove various toxins from your pet’s body.
Brussel sprouts are rich in Vitamins A, B1, B6, C, and K, folate, potassium, and manganese. However, you should ensure that you always serve them in moderation and remove the nubby stems before you do.
Spinach may not be very tasty but it’s a healthy supplement to your dog’s nourishment.
Spinach contains magnesium, iron, Vitamins A, C, and E, and is very healthy for dogs. However, you must ensure that it’s pureed before you feed your pet because they cannot fully digest the leaves.
It’s advisable to serve them only organic and plain spinach puree. Dogs usually don’t like the taste, so it’s better to serve them spinach along with their favorite meat.
If the next question on your mind is what fruits can dogs eat then keep reading on to find out. We’re sure your dog will relish these healthy and juicy treats.
It might be more fitting to segregate coconuts under the nut or seed group, but they can loosely fit in the fruit category too.
Coconuts help improve your dog’s fur and skin. It also contains anti-inflammatory components to help cure aching joints. With inflammation under control, you can expect your dog’s cuts, wounds, and other hot spots to heal quicker.
However, you shouldn’t feed your dog coconut water because it has an extremely high calcium content. Also, ensure that all of the coconut shells are removed from the flesh before feeding it to your pet because it can cause choking.
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Mangoes are high in Vitamins A, C, E, and B6, making them a healthy snack for dogs.
Even if the mango is ripe and soft, slice the mango into smaller pieces first to avoid potential choking. Then, peel the skin and the pit before serving it to your pet. Although your dog can eat the skin, it’s tough to digest, so it may even get stuck in its digestive tract.
Although mangoes are healthy and delicious, feed your dog small portions at a time.
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Bananas are another fruit that dogs love. Bananas contain high fiber and are rich in potassium, copper, biotin, and vitamins. They make a great low-calorie snack for your dog. Due to its low sodium content, it’s also one of the healthiest snacks you can occasionally feed your dog.
Mash some bananas and serve them as a topping to your dog’s usual meal, or slice a banana into small pieces before you serve it to your pet.
Although bananas are great in nutritional value, they’re also high in sugar, so they should only be served as special treats to keep diabetes and obesity at bay.
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These tasty and juicy melons can even be given to puppies. If your dog is leaning towards becoming overweight, but you still want to provide them with healthy treats, then Cantaloupe is just the perfect treat.
It is rich in dietary fiber, folate, niacin, Vitamins A, C, B6, and potassium that help in slowing down aging. Due to its high water content, it’s also a tasty way to ensure your dog remains hydrated since well-hydrated dogs have better digestion and a lesser chance of constipation.
Unlike its raisin cousins, cranberries are not toxic for dogs and make for a great treat. Cranberries are loaded with Vitamin C, fiber, and potassium and are a low-calorie food that can help your dog fight inflammation.
They are also known to reduce plaque and tartar buildup in your dog’s mouth and help improve bladder health and reduce GI diseases.
Feed your dog raw or cooked cranberries. You can also add them to dog cookies or as toppings to their meals. Again, the key here is feeding your dog cranberries sparingly.
Cucumbers have low-calorie content and are a healthy addition to your dog’s meal and something you can feed your dog without any worries.
Cucumbers are best during the summer because of their high water content. They contain 96% water, so consider feeding your pet cucumbers especially if they’re active, to keep them hydrated.
Cucumbers also have phytochemicals and phytonutrients that can help eradicate your dog’s foul breath.
Oranges are healthy and safe for dogs. They’re packed with Vitamin C and can be fed as treats, in limited amounts. It’s difficult for a dog’s digestive system to digest oranges because of their high sugar content and high acidity.
Also, dogs produce their own Vitamin C, so an additional boost is okay, but not a must.
You can get creative with feeding your dog oranges by freezing them in the form of popsicles or by juicing them, especially on a hot day.
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Peaches are a delight for humans and you can feed them to your dog as treats as well. If you’re serving your dog peaches, always remove the pit because they’re a choking hazard.
Peaches have vitamins and minerals like Vitamins A and C and fiber. They’re also an abundant source of antioxidants that improve your dog’s kidney and liver function and reduce the risk of cancer.
Never feed your dog rotten peaches. They should always be fresh, washed, and cut into small pieces so that your dog can digest them easily.
Pears are a great treat for dogs because they contain all the necessary vitamins, minerals, and nutrients needed in a dog’s diet.
Pears also have dietary fiber, which helps improve your dog’s digestive health. You can grate a pear and add it as a topping to your dog’s meal or you can also freeze some pear chunks and combine them with other dog-friendly fruits.
Pears have high sugar content and it’s best that you treat your pet to a pear occasionally.
Raspberries are a perfect treat for dogs, especially the older ones. They’re a great source of antioxidants, and because of their anti-inflammatory properties, they may help relieve joint pain and arthritis.
Raspberries are low on calories but high in dietary fiber, which boosts your dog’s digestive system. They make a great add-on to your dog’s regular meals, especially if your pet suffers from obesity.
Raspberries should be given in moderation. If your dog suffers from GI problems after eating raspberries, then you need to consult your veterinarian immediately.
Blueberries are a superfood filled with high levels of antioxidants. They’re also rich in fiber, anthocyanins, and phytochemicals that help improve your dog’s overall health.
The Vitamins A, C, and K found in blueberries significantly boost your dog’s immune system. It also helps with any inflammation and supports your pet’s muscles, skin, and nerves, and aids in improving bone density.
Blueberries make for the perfect snack and you can feed them to your pet, either fresh, frozen, pureed, or mashed.
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Apple slices are great dog treats and feeding your dog an apple a day can keep the vet away.
Apples are a healthy alternative food that satisfies your dog’s sweet tooth minus the calories. Dogs enjoy the crunchiness of apples, and it also keeps their teeth clean. You can either feed them fresh apples, or you could also make some apple pretzels, which are a delicious treat.
Remember to keep the seeds and core away from your pet. Apple seeds contain cyanide which can be fatal for dogs.
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A question that many dog owners often ask is can I feed my dog human food instead of dog food? The answer does not have to be a categorical NO. There are certain human foods your dog can eat, as long as you feed them in moderation. Seafood falls in this category too. Here is a list of the different kinds of seafood you can feed your dog:
Your dog can eat salmon. Salmon is a rich source of omega-three fatty acids. It boosts your dog’s immune system, reduce inflammation, and keep your pet’s coat healthy and shiny. Salmon is protein-rich and hence a popular ingredient in high-quality commercial dog food.
Always feed your dog salmon that is either grilled, roasted, poached, baked, or steamed. Do not add any herbs, spices, oil, or seasoning. Canned salmon is also a good idea. Including salmon once a week is ideal for your dog’s diet.
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Like salmon, tuna is also good for dogs. The omega-three fatty acids present in tuna improve your dog’s eye and heart health.
While fresh tuna is ideal, canned tuna is also a great alternative. When going for the canned variety for your dog, pick ones that are soaked in water instead of oil. Also, ensure that it does not contain flavors and spices. Canned tuna has sodium and mercury too much of which can be unhealthy for your pet.
You can also feed your dog tuna flavored water from the can but in moderate amounts.
Adding sardines to your dog’s meals at least once a week will improve their dental health, develop their muscles, enhance their immune system, and protect them from kidney disease.
The Omega-3 in sardines ensures that your dog’s coat remains soft and healthy. One advantage of sardines is that they are small fish that have soft bones so you can feed your dog the whole fish directly. Sardines are small but loaded with nutrients.
Canned sardines are a good alternative for your dog but preferably the ones soaked in water or natural oils like olive or coconut rather than processed oils.
As a rare treat, you can feed your dog some cooked shrimp. Always remove the veins, tails, and shells of the shrimp before feeding it to your dog. Shrimp is a generous source of protein, Vitamins B12 and D, iron, and niacin, and also low in saturated fat and calories.
It’s ideal to boil the shrimp at a temperature of 145°F. Keep it bland i.e. without spices, herbs, and seasoning. Shrimp by itself is good for your dog but the seasoning you add isn’t. Feeding your dog shrimp once a week should be enough.
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Thinking about getting a dog and wondering what do dogs love to eat? The meat will surely top the list of food that dogs love and it should come as no surprise given that dogs are carnivorous by nature. Here are some types of meat that are good for your pet.
There’s still no consensus on whether it is safe to feed your dog pork meat. However, there are many things to consider before adding pork to your dog’s diet.
The most important prerequisite to check off your list is that the meat should always be thoroughly cooked. Well-cooked pork minus any sauce, seasoning, and spices are good for your dog.
Feeding your dog uncooked pork can cause it to get sick because of a parasitic infection called trichinosis commonly found in pork that can cause severe vomiting, diarrhea, muscle inflammation, and lethargy.
It’s likely that your dog will prefer ham and bacon, but these are not healthy options.
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Chicken is a significant ingredient in commercially produced dog food because of its rich protein content and omega-6 fatty acids. It could be a part of your dog’s daily diet.
Chicken is an energy booster and it will also keep your dog’s coat and skin healthy. Thanks to its amino acids and glucosamine content, the chicken will keep your dog’s bones healthy and strong too.
However, raw chicken is a big no. It should be either roasted, baked, poached, or grilled with the chicken bones completely removed.
Chicken is a great option if you’ve asked the question, what can I feed my dog instead of dog food?
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You can certainly share some turkey with your pet occasionally as long as it is skinless and boneless.
Remember to keep the herbs, sauces, or seasoning away because even without those added flavors, your dog will still enjoy this phosphorus, riboflavin, and protein-rich snack.
So the next time you’re thinking about slipping some turkey to your dog during Thanksgiving dinner, keep the portions small and ensure that the meat is well-cooked and bland.
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You’ll find most dog foods mixed with lean beef. Beef is a superb source of protein, vitamins, and minerals essential for your dog’s overall nutritional needs.
Grass-fed beef is the best choice of beef for your dog because it’s packed with additional fatty acids that help keep your dog’s coat shiny and its muscles and joints strong. Beef also has omega-three fatty acids that can help prevent skin problems.
If you’re not serving your dog ground beef and are opting for a plain steak instead, ensure that the meat is cut into smaller pieces with the bones and excess fats removed. And keep away from the seasoning.
Cooked eggs are nutritious and can help meet your pet’s nutritional needs. It’s easy to prepare too and boiled and sliced eggs make for a healthy and sumptuous dog treat.
Eggs are rich in proteins and also contain minerals and vitamins essential in keeping your dog’s health at its peak. It also helps make their coat and skin shiny and healthy.
Never feed your dog raw eggs because raw eggs can contain the bacteria Salmonella which can be harmful.
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Yes, dogs can eat cheese. However, you must make sure your dog is not lactose intolerant. It can be hard to keep dogs away from cheese because they’re one of the tastiest treats for canines. So, although lactose intolerance is rare in dogs, it is better to consult with a vet before adding cheese to your dog’s diet.
Cheese is known for its high-fat content, so choose options that have comparatively lower calories. The recommended cheeses for dogs are cheddar, cottage, and mozzarella.
If you find it difficult to feed your dog its medications a smart solution is to try feeding your pet its meds by hiding them inside cheese cubes. This can be done for some medications, however, not antibiotics and others. Ideally, consult with your vet before doing so.
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Another human food that you can share with your dog is yogurt. However, not all kinds of yogurt are good for dogs. The ideal yogurt for your pet is one that’s plain without any additives or flavors.
Greek yogurt is a great option because it contains less lactose. Another option is Kefir.
Before feeding your dog yogurt, make sure that it can handle dairy products. Although yogurt has probiotics that break down lactose better, it is a good idea to consult your vet before you add it to your pet’s diet.
Your dog can drink milk. However, it’s risky to feed it to puppies because most pups are lactose intolerant and can experience intestinal issues because of milk.
However, adult dogs can handle the occasional tablespoon of goat’s milk or cow’s milk without suffering from any side effects as long as your dog is not lactose intolerant.
You must ensure that you only serve your dog milk in small quantities. As generous as you might be feeling, a bowl of milk is bad for your dog as it can lead to diarrhea, loose stools, and vomiting.
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Other Human Foods that Dog Can Eat
When served in moderate amounts, this well-loved sandwich spread can also be a tasty treat for your dog. Small dogs can enjoy half a tablespoon of peanut butter while larger breeds can enjoy a whole spoonful.
The best and safest kind of peanut butter is the unsalted and homemade kinds. This ensures that your peanut butter treat doesn’t have Xylitol which is a sugar alternative. This component is severely fatal to your canine even in small amounts.
Also, peanut butter is high in fat, so indulging your dog too much can cause them to become overweight and could also lead to obesity and GI problems.
While humans can eat popcorn that is flavored with salt, cheddar cheese, and butter, dogs can’t. So, while you can enjoy a game or a movie with your dog and share a bowl of popcorn with them, ensure that the popcorn does not contain the aforementioned additives. Also, the popcorn you feed your pet should be air-popped with the kernels fully popped.
Filter the popcorn before serving it to your dog. Remove any kernels that are not fully popped. Unpopped kernels are a choking hazard.
Bread, particularly whole grain and plain white, is good for your pet occasionally.
Before serving your dog bread, make sure whether your dog does not have a wheat allergy because if they do, it could cause complications.
Bread can be fattening, hence moderation is required. Also, avoid bread with raisins, nuts, garlic, and any artificial sweeteners or flavorings.
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This easy-to-prepare meal is loaded with fiber and a healthy dose of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. Oatmeal is good for dogs as long as it does not contain any flavors, milk, or sweeteners.
Oatmeal is best served bland and it is good to include oatmeal in your dog’s diet especially if it has bowel irregularities.
Ensure that you do not make it a daily habit because oatmeal does lead to unwanted weight gain. You can use oatmeal either as a food topping or serve it on its own.
This sweet and healthy delight is another human food that you can share with your dog.
It is packed with antioxidants, Vitamins A, B, C, D, E, and K, calcium, copper, potassium, and magnesium. Giving your dog honey can help alleviate allergies since it introduces minimal amounts of pollen to your pet’s body.
This occasional treat then helps build your dog’s immunity against the allergens in its environment. It’s best to opt for raw or Manuka honey and not commercially processed honey.
A teaspoon of honey is sufficient for small-sized dogs, while bigger ones can have up to a tablespoon.
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Wheat and Grains
Your dog can have their share of wheat and other grains and there’s no rule that dogs should be grain-free.
Grains can be a delicious source of the needed fatty acids, fiber, and protein and aid your dog’s digestive system. Wheat is a must-have in your canine’s diet and is something that they can’t live without.
The only time that you can’t give your dog wheat or other grains is when they have allergies. You must ideally consult your vet if you suspect that your dog has allergic reactions to wheat and grains.
Quinoa is a suitable human food for your dogs.
The nutritional profile of this grain makes it a better alternative to wheat, corn, and other starches that are commonly used in kibble.
Quinoa contains saponin, which can irritate your dog’s digestive system. However, thoroughly washing quinoa before cooking helps eradicate the effects that saponin has on your dog.
Introduce this grain to your dog in small portions while observing any changes in its behavior after consumption.
This is a staple food for many cultures, and your dog can eat rice too. Among the many human food dogs can eat, this is the most sustainable alternative to dog food.
White rice is an excellent source of digestible carbs, and most dogs of all ages can tolerate a meal of rice. It also has fiber, protein, and fats – all essential nutrients to your dog’s diet.
If your dog has an immune response to gluten, then rice is your perfect alternative since it can supply the needed carbohydrates without gluten.
Brown rice is also a good option for dogs but comparatively harder to digest because of its coarser texture. However, plain rice is always the best kind to feed your pet.
Corn is safe for dogs. There’s a misconception that corn is nothing but filler for dog meals. This is not true because corn comes with its own nutritional value.
This grain meets most of the necessary nutritional needs of your dog, like protein, carbohydrates, linoleic acid, fiber, and antioxidants. These nutrients help your dog’s skin, coat, muscles, immune system, and motility.
Unless your dog is among the 1% of dogs that suffer from corn sensitivity, then that’s the only time that you have to follow a corn-free diet.
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Nuts are generally a big no for dogs. Peanuts are an exception because your dog can safely eat them.
Peanuts are a perfect ingredient for homemade dog cookies. The only heads-up you need is that peanuts have an extremely high-fat content and so your dog’s digestive system will have to work overtime just to digest the peanut fat.
It’s advisable not to overindulge your dog with peanuts because they can also develop pancreatitis. Salty peanuts are a big no. Instead, select low-sodium peanuts or unsalted ones.
Can Dogs Eat Human Foods All the Time?
No. Human food should always be fed to your pet in moderation. It can be served as an occasional treat, but it should not replace your dog’s regular meals.
Additionally, humans and dogs metabolize and digest food differently, so human food should not be your dog’s staple diet.
There’s a wide range of human food dogs can eat. Your dog will also enjoy the new tastes and textures every once in a while.
The answer to the question of what is the healthiest food to feed your dog will never point to human food.
High-quality dog food should provide all the nutritional requirements that your dog needs. Even if it is safe and suitable for your dog, human food should in no way replace its usual meals. Instead, it should only supplement what your dog is already getting from its regular meals.
What do dogs love to eat?
Everything and anything that they see or smell is enticing for them. That’s why as a responsible dog owner, you need to be aware of the kinds of human food they can and cannot eat. This will help you make smart choices when it comes to their health.