10 Human Foods You Can Feed Your Dog
Some veterinarians will tell you to keep your dog strictly on a dog-food diet to prevent her from gaining excess weight or becoming very ill. But it can be hard to keep from sharing your favorite foods with your best friend.
Veterinarians and other dog nutrition experts know what definitely isn't safe to feed your dog, but often you don't hear about foods that you can feed your dog. Some foods are not only okay for dogs to eat, but can be actually good for them!
Here's a list of foods from PawNation.com and others that you can safely feed your dog, as well as explanations for why they may benefit your dog's diet:
According to Modern Dog magazine, pumpkin contains both fiber and beta-carotene, a type of vitamin A. Like humans, dogs need fiber in their diet to promote good digestive health. A tablespoon once a day for a large breed dog will do the trick. Note, if given too much, this can result in diarrhea or flatulence. If in doubt, check with your veterinarian for a safe amount.
2. Oily fish
Oily fish like salmon could be nutritious for your dog (and also for you). Salmon is known for its fatty acids like omega-3s, which help promote a shiny coat, a strong immune system and healthy skin. The fish also contains a lot of protein. Modern Dog recommends using salmon oil or salmon, as long as the fish is cooked, deboned and descaled. Skin is OK.
Yogurt may be a great choice for dogs with a sensitive stomach. A dog's digestive health relies on a good amount of healthy bacteria for regulation. Luckily, yogurt contains active bacteria called probiotics that can help regulate your dog's system. This can be beneficial as long as the dog isn't lactose intolerant. Shoot for yogurt that's unsweetened without any artificial flavoring, and one that's fat-free if your dog is on a diet. Frozen yogurt can serve as a nice cool treat for her in the summer.
4. Green beans
A good amount of green veggies may benefit your pooch's diet. Green beans are rich in vitamins and minerals like vitamin C, vitamin K, manganese and fiber. They're also low in calories, making it a smart choice for dogs who need to shed a few pounds. Modern Dog suggests trying green beans frozen as a fun year-round snack.
5. Sweet potatoes
Sweet potatoes can be another healthy addition to your dog's diet. Modern Dog states that this spud contains heaps of vitamins and minerals, like beta-carotene, manganese, vitamin B6 and vitamin C. Cooking the vegetables just like you would for yourself and serving them in her bowl mashed, cooked or even dehydrated. Just be sure to skip the salt and butter.
Eggs are an excellent option to add to a healthy diet. Modern Dog states that the riboflavin and selenium can largely benefit your dog's diet, and that protein in the eggs can help soothe your dog's upset stomach. Be sure to cook the egg and serve it whole - not just the egg whites - as that robs your pup of the biotin in the yolk. If you're currently training your pup, whole, cooked eggs can be a useful treat. Avoid frying the eggs in oil, or adding seasonings or butter. Cut the eggs into bite-size pieces to make it easier to eat.
Ah, cheese. Just about everyone - other than those who can't have it - loves cheese. The same goes for dogs. Dogs, however, can be lactose intolerant like humans, so be careful. Test your dog out with something that's a little lighter, like cottage cheese, which can be gentle on pups who may have sensitive stomachs. However, as hard as it may be to resist, make sure you feed your dog cheese in moderation.
Blueberries and other forms of berries can be great for dogs. The fruit is loaded with antioxidants, fiber, phytochemicals and vitamins. Serve them fresh or frozen. Just don't over-serve, because too many berries could upset your dog's stomach.
As a veggie, carrots can be a wise choice for dogs. Carrots are not only healthy, but they taste good and serve as a healthy snack for your pooch. Carrots, like other foods mentioned in this list, are a source of beta-carotene and have large amounts of potassium and fiber. Aside from their nutritious ways, carrots can also be a good dental assistant. Carrots can help remove plaque from your dog's teeth as well as keep her breath fresh. Talk about a win-win.
10. Brewer's yeast
There are two types of yeast - brewer's yeast and baker's yeast. Modern Dog states that it's important that you get brewer's yeast, which is used for making beer. Baker's yeast and raw dough can be toxic to dogs, though it makes for a mean pizza dough. On the other hand, brewer's yeast is jam-packed with B vitamins, which are good for your dog's coat and can regulate her stomach's carbohydrate metabolism. Sprinkle a little over her food to enhance a meal and she'll go to town.
These are some of the human foods that can be added to your dog's diet on occasion without her getting sick. Just be sure to feed them in moderation, and of course check with your veterinarian before drastically changing her diet.