It’s a rare pet owner who never slips a little something from the dinner table to a happy pet under the table. With Thanksgiving upon us, and all that wonderful food on your plate, should you feel guilty if you succumb to those big brown eyes?
The short answer is no, but there are certain caveats. Keep in mind that these celebratory additions should comprise no more than ten percent of your dog’s total intake. As in our own diets, some choices are better than others.
Say “yes” without a guilty conscience to:
Apples – A crisp bite of apple is a great treat and offers Vitamin A, Vitamin C and fiber.
Berries – Consider offering frozen berries on a hot day or to break the monotony and give a boost of antioxidants.
Bananas – Athletes have long depended on a banana for a spurt of energy and a bit of potassium – what could be better for your fast-moving, athletic dog?
Pineapple – Don’t wait to visit Hawaii. For potassium and calcium, your dog may love juicy bits of pineapple. And the strange benefit to canines eating this fruit is they are less likely to chow down on their own poo.
Cheese – Although this treat provides protein, some dogs (like people) have problems digesting dairy products. Start with small servings and observe closely.
Eggs – Choose cooked eggs without seasoning as a good source of protein. Avoid raw eggs (even if it means your floor would be cleaned in a hurry) to steer clear of salmonella risks.
Carrots – A good source of Vitamin A, carrots can be served raw or cooked. (I know a poodle mix that can clean out the kids’ snack bag of carrot sticks in short order.)
Rice – This can be a “go to” food if your dog’s had digestive problems. A little chicken and rice can soothe sensitive stomachs.
Green Beans – You dog may jump for joy to be on the green bean team and reap the benefit of Vitamin C, Vitamin K and Manganese.
Many foods you enjoy are toxic or dangerous for your dog. Say no to:
Grapes, raisins and currents — All three contain a toxin that can damage a dog’s kidneys.
Chocolate – This well-loved treat can cause vomiting and diarrhea in your pooch. In larger quantities, it can be toxic to his heart and nervous system.
Fat trimmings – Dogs are drawn to anything that smells like meat, but your dog’s consumption of fat trimmings can cause pancreatitis.
Cat food – A dog may try to eat the cat’s food at your house, but it’s usually too high in protein and fats to be good for your dog.
Onions or garlic – These aromatic choices can damage your pet’s red blood cells and cause anemia.
If your Thanksgiving menu is filled with items that are ‘forbidden’, you may want to add some of the good table food treats to your shopping list. So although turkey and stuffing may be out for your pet – there are still a lot of options on the table to make your pup sit up and say, “Thanks!”