Safe and Dangerous Food for Pets

With the holiday season just behind us, you may have been wondering what foods are safe to share with your furry friend and which ones to avoid. Here are a few to keep in mind for next season as well as all year round.

Many dogs like to eat any and everything they can find, here are a few things that are safe to share with your best pal. Plain pieces of bread, pasta and rice although maybe not the most beneficial nutrient wise is generally safe to give. Veggies like carrots, corn, pumpkin, cucumber, lettuce, green beans, celery and bell peppers are a good choice. So if you feel like sharing your salad go ahead, just make sure you skip the dressing and onions. Most fruits are also safe to give with the biggest exception being grapes and raisins; those can be very dangerous and possibly even deadly if ingested. Meats, in general, are a tasty treat including eggs, fish, pork and ham. Just make sure fish and eggs are cooked thoroughly and that the bones are avoided as cooked bones especially those of chicken or turkey can splinter and cause pain or damage. Cashews, peanuts, peanut butter, coconut, cheese, honey, plain yogurt and plain unsalted, unbuttered, air-popped popcorn are super yummy treats but be sure that these are given only as an occasional small treat as they tend to be on the fattier side and if your pooch is on a diet it may just be best to avoid them altogether.

Some definite foods to avoid are chocolate, it is very toxic, and even a small amount can cause significant issues or possibly even death, best to keep it far out of reach. Many nuts are unsafe including pecans, walnuts and macadamia which are toxic and although almonds may not be toxic they can be a choking hazard. Garlic, onions, chives and avocado are best avoided as well as coffee (caffeine in general), gum and alcohol. Cinnamon can be irritating to your dog’s stomach and although a potentially popular choice, ice cream is also not a good idea as it also can irritate the stomach, instead of ice cream, frozen fruit and plain yogurt in an ice cube tray is a much better alternative.

Cats too love a tasty treat every once-in-a-while, and many treats that can be shared with your dog can also be shared with your cat. Keep in mind smaller amounts and chewing habits of your pet though, also cats are more likely to be picky. Nuts and seeds, in general, should be avoided by cats and although it may be tempting milk and milk alternatives like coconut milk should be avoided as most cats, and many dogs in-fact are lactose intolerant. If your pet has allergies or if you are in doubt about giving a treat to your pet then it is best to avoid it and speak to your veterinarian about it at their next appointment. As always, if your cat or dog does manage to get into something they shouldn’t have, make sure to call your veterinarian as soon as possible.

Written by Centennial Animal Hospital