Let me tell you about a friend of mine. He’s an idiot. He thinks that he’s doing his dog a favor by sharing meals with him. I’ve tried to tell him a million times that giving Morty pizza is not a good idea, but he keeps on doing it. Why do I tell him not to give pizza to Morty? It’s because pizza is just loaded with stuff that is bad for dogs. Tomato sauce, onions, garlic, mushrooms, and more. And this guy even tosses him chocolate and a beer from time to time. What the heck is up with that?
So many people don’t realize that there are foods that their dogs should never, ever be allowed to eat. “But Morty likes it!” says my friend. Yeah, sure he does. Morty doesn’t know any better. Morty is a dog, for crying out loud. But my friend should know better. There are foods that dogs should not eat, and that means all dogs, not just Morty.
What’s Good for People May Not Be Good for Dogs
Foods that are fine for humans, and even for other animals, are often not good for dogs. They can even be poisonous. This is because dogs have a different metabolic rate, which is the way that the body breaks down foods and turns them into energy. With that in mind, let’s talk about foods that you should never allow your dog to have, foods that are okay in moderation, and foods that are good for your dog.
Oh, sure, it’s hilarious when your dog drinks a beer or gets into your pina colada, and then passes out on the floor. Funny right up until the point where he could die from kidney or liver failure after even just a few sips of beer. If you allow your dog to have alcohol, you are an unspeakable moron. Is that clear? Good.
Your dog can have apples, but not the seeds. The seeds contain cyanide, and even a small amount can be lethal to your dog. So if you love your dog, by all means feel free to give him or her a few apple slices, but make sure that there are no seeds.
Why would you want to feed your dog baby food in the first place? It’s expensive, and besides, it’s often just full of ingredients that are not good for dogs. Many baby foods contain onion powder, and onion can be toxic to dogs.
You may have heard that some bones are bad for your dog, and some are safe, but the reality is that there is no such thing as a bone that is safe for your dog. Oh, but he loves them! Sure he does, but you are supposed to be the adult here, and you are supposed to be a responsible dog parent. You need to know that all bones can splinter, and can become lodged in your dog’s digestive tract.
Never, ever give your dog chocolate. It contains not just caffeine, but other substances that can harm your dog’s nervous system.
Why in the world would you give your dog coffee? This shouldn’t even be an issue – if you’re giving your dog coffee, you’re an idiot. So, if you’re thinking about doing it, think again. It’s poison. It reacts to your dog’s nervous system the same way as chocolate.
Your dog is not a garbage disposal. If you are trimming fat off meat to cook for your dinner, throw it away. If you feed it to your dog, it could cause pancreatitis.
Grapes and Raisins
A mere handful of grapes can cause kidney failure. Raisins are just dried grapes and therefore equally deadly.
Hey, I’m not judging here. You do what you like. But if your dog gets into your stash, it could cause damage to his heart or nervous system.
Onions can poison your dog, causing damage to the red blood cells and resulting in anemia.
Tomatoes can be very bad for your dog’s kidneys.
As is the case with humans, sugar can cause tooth decay, diabetes, and obesity in your dog.
Carrots are very good for dogs. They contain many valuable nutrients and most dogs will happily accept them as an alternative to commercial dog treats.
Salt isn’t bad in small amounts. The thing is, a small amount means just a few grains. Any more than that can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Good dog food will contain just enough salt to keep your dog’s diet balanced – more is not needed.
If there’s a dog that doesn’t love peanut butter, I haven’t met him! Be careful, though, when choosing peanut butter for your dog. Some brands contain xylitol, which is an artificial sweetener that is deadly for dogs. Many brands also contain sugar. Choose a peanut butter that is clearly labeled as containing only peanuts. You can also make your own peanut butter for your dog by pureeing unsalted peanuts in a blender or food processor.
Eggs are good for dogs. In fact, adding the occasional egg to your dog’s diet can improve the condition of his skin and coat.
There’s a reason why many premium dog foods contain salmon and other oily fish – it’s full of Omega 3 fatty acids that are great for your dog’s coat and immune system.
Fed sparingly, cheese makes a great treat for dogs. Not too much, though, since cheese is very high in fat.
Blueberries are full of antioxidants and very good for your dog.
Your dog won’t be harmed by eating plain air-popped popcorn. The buttery microwave variety, though, isn’t all that good for dogs or humans – it’s full of trans fats.
Your dog can eat cashews. I’d advise not feeding too many, though, as they’re very high-calorie.
Macadamia nuts, on the other hand, should never be offered to your dog. They can cause vomiting, depression, hypothermia, and weakness, and can even be fatal.
Dogs can eat almonds. However, most dogs don’t find almonds all that digestible, and they can cause digestive difficulties.
There is nothing in pineapple that will harm a dog, and it’s very high in nutrients. However, it’s a rare dog that actually likes pineapple.
Dogs can eat watermelon. It makes a great hydrating treat in the summer months. Keep in mind, though, that watermelon is not a substitute for having fresh water available at all times.
Cottage cheese is loaded with calcium and protein. It’s a great supplement to your dog’s regular diet unless he is lactose intolerant.
Back to Jake again. He considered bread to be the most perfect food. If I’d held a raw, dripping steak in one hand and a piece of bread in the other, he’d have taken the bread every time. The occasional piece of bread, if your dog loves it, is a good treat. Never feed raw bread dough, however – it will expand in your dog’s stomach and could cause him extreme distress or even kill him.
Some parts of avocado are safe for dogs to eat. Others are not. It’s best to avoid avocado.
There is nothing in corn that will hurt your dog, although the cob is not all that digestible. Corn has little nutritional value, though, so you might be better advised to find more nutritious treats.
Oatmeal contains a lot of fiber, and that’s good for dogs. If you want to share your breakfast with your dog, though, make sure that your oatmeal doesn’t contain a lot of sugar.
Coffee and Tea
No. Just no. Don’t give your dog anything that contains caffeine.
Broccoli is good for dogs. If you want to toss out the odd blossom or stalk, feel free to do so.
Sweet potatoes are good for dogs. In fact, many premium dog foods contain sweet potatoes.
Is it OK to feed your dog human food?
It depends on the type of human food. The unfortunate thing is that a lot of what we consider to be “human food” isn’t even really all that good for humans. Would you eat nachos, Little Debbie cakes, Big Macs, and so on, and actually tell yourself that they’re good for you? No? Then don’t do it to your dog.
Is canned food better for dogs?
Not usually. Most dogs do best on a dry diet.
Is yogurt good for dogs?
Unless your dog is lactose-intolerant, you can feel free to give him plain yogurt. Put some in a Kong toy!
Can dogs drink milk?
As with yogurt and other dairy products, you can give your dog milk provided he’s not lactose-intolerant. Offer it sparingly, though, as too much milk can cause diarrhea.
Is rice good for dogs?
Rice isn’t all that high in nutrients but it certainly won’t harm your dog. Plain rice can be very good for dogs that have diarrhea.
Can I feed my dog chicken daily?
Chicken is high in protein and a primary ingredient in many dog foods. There is no reason why your dog shouldn’t have chicken every day. Just make sure it’s de-boned!
Is beef or chicken better for dogs?
Chicken is slightly higher in protein and generally less expensive than beef. Both are good for dogs.
What Does a Dog Naturally Eat?
This is kind of a crazy question. If you look at dogs in the wild, they’re probably going to eat just about anything. Would a feral dog always eat a perfectly balanced diet? It’s highly unlikely since much of his diet would consist of what’s readily available.
What Do Dogs Drink?
Beer, whiskey, and wine. Oh come on, I’m joking! Dogs need plenty of clear, clean water every day.
Kind of a No Brainer
When you think of all the things that you shouldn’t be feeding your dog, it kind of makes you think that maybe you should just be going with decent commercial dog food. I honestly don’t understand why my friend thinks he’s doing Morty such a big favor giving him human food. I mean, this guy loves his dog, right? But he feeds him stuff that he just shouldn’t have. I guess there are no limits to human stupidity.
Know What Is In the Food
You can feed some human foods to your dog, but generally speaking, you should keep them to a minimum. Lean meat is okay as long as it does not contain bones or skin. Eggs are good for your dog. As to fruit, you can feed them strawberries, blueberries, watermelon, and bananas. Most vegetables are fine, like green beans, carrots, or cucumber slices, but you should avoid feeding pickled vegetables to your dog because they are very high in salt. Dogs also like potatoes, and they are fine to feed to your dog, as well.
A Rule of Thumb
Generally speaking, unless your vet recommends certain human foods for your dog, you would be best advised to avoid them. Your dog’s digestive system is not like yours, and the foods that you enjoy may not be appropriate for your pet. Sure, your best buddy loves pizza, but it’s not good for him.
My vet recommends a quality dry dog food, and you might be surprised to know that “quality” does not always mean “expensive.” My vet tells me that he has raised many dogs to ripe old ages using nothing more than generic dry food, supplemented by a multivitamin once in a while. I have to admit, though, I’m a compulsive dog parent, and I prefer feeding my dogs vet-recommended dog food.