Helpful Or Harmful For Your Dog?

Helpful or Harmful: What Can You Feed Your Dog?

Helpful or Harmful: What Can You Feed Your Dog?

It’s a familiar situation for a dog owner. You’re sitting down to a delicious meal, and you’re hungry. But just as you’re about to take the first bite, you feel beady eyes boring into you. Sure enough, your dog is sitting there, staring pleadingly at you. Your poor, starving dog, who is trying to convince you that they have literally never eaten anything, ever, in their lives.

Those puppy dog eyes can be very effective. You might find yourself wondering – would one bite hurt?

Of course, we’ve all heard horror stories about a single grape killing someone’s beloved pet. Any sensible pet owner knows that not every type of human food is suitable for dogs. However, if you’re looking to give your dog a treat, or even supplement their regular diet, there are plenty of foods that are safe for dogs to eat. However, it’s important to know which foods are safe – and which foods aren’t.

Foods Your Dog Can Eat

Many fruits and vegetables, as well as most types of meat, are suitable for your dog. You might notice that commercial dog foods include turkey or chicken, as well as rice and vegetables. While you should supplement your dog’s diet in moderation, here are a few foods that are fine, even nourishing, to feed to your dog.

Fruit and Vegetables for Dogs

Fruits and vegetables are usually fine to feed your dog. There are a few notable exceptions, which we’ll discuss later. While individual dogs may vary, here are a few foods you can give to your dog:

·       Apples

·       Carrots

·       Coconut

·       Blueberries

·       Oranges

·       Celery

·       Watermelon

·       Blackberries

·       Peas

·       Mushrooms

·       Broccoli

·       Sweet potatoes

·       Mango

·       Bananas

·       Strawberries

·       Cooked potatoes

Always be sure to cut vegetables like carrots into bite-size pieces, preventing your dog from choking. While most fruits and vegetables contain protein and fiber that’s good for dogs, too much can lead to an upset stomach. If your dog suffers from vomiting, diarrhoea, or nausea after eating one of these treats, it’s possible that you’re feeding them too much.

Meat for Healthy Dogs

Meats are a popular treat for our dogs. Fortunately, most of them are perfectly safe for our precious pets to eat.

·       Salmon

·       Turkey

·       Pork

·       Shrimp

·       Chicken

·       Beef

However, it’s always best to serve your dog meat that’s been properly cooked. Raw salmon, for instance, can contain a parasite that may harm your dog. So, this means that you can’t share your sushi with your pet!

Always make sure meats like turkey, chicken, and fish are properly boned. Small fish bones or the dreaded chicken bones can stick in a dog’s throat, or even cause digestion problems and damage. If you want to give your dog a meaty treat, pull off bite-sized pieces of meat, instead of giving your dog a whole carcass or even part of one.

Also, make sure the meat hasn’t been cooked with foods that aren’t safe for dogs. Garlic and onions aren’t suitable for dogs, but they’re a popular ingredient to cook alongside meat.

Other Dog-Friendly Snacks

There are other human foods that can provide nutrition and protein to dogs. As always, it’s best to serve these foods in moderation.

·       Peanut butter

·       Eggs

·       Popcorn

·       Bread

·       Cooked rice

·       Oatmeal

Scrambled eggs can make a delicious breakfast for a dog. However, if you supplement the eggs with a splash of milk, be sure not to add too much. Milk in moderation is fine for dogs, but it can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea, since dogs are prone to lactose intolerance.

Bread also contains a lot of sugar. Remember that your dog is much smaller than you are and can only tolerate sugar and salt in smaller amounts.

Peanut butter is another well-known, popular snack for dogs. If your dog doesn’t like taking their medication, try smothering the pill in peanut butter or another treat, like a piece of ham. The peanut butter hides the taste of the pill and encourages your dog to swallow it properly!

Foods Your Dog CAN’T Eat

Just about every dog owner will find themselves frantically Googling “Is [this] food safe for dogs?” after their pet has somehow got their paws on something they weren’t supposed to eat. While most foods are fine for dogs, at least in moderation, there are some foods you’ll definitely want to keep out of your pet’s diet.

·       Chocolate

This is something every dog owner knows – chocolate is very, very bad for dogs. Chocolate contains caffeine and theobromine, stimulants which dogs can’t tolerate. If your dog eats too much chocolate, you should seek a vet’s advice immediately.

The darker the chocolate, the higher the concentration of poisonous stimulations. If you dog does eat some chocolate by mistake, a lot will depend on how much they ate and how dark the chocolate is. For example, a single dark chocolate could kill a small dog, but a larger dog could eat a handful of milk or white chocolate and suffer only mild stomach upset.

Nevertheless, if your dog does eat some chocolate by mistake, it’s best to get them checked out regardless.

·       Alcohol

Alcohol can lead to ethanol poisoning in dogs, which can result in death. While it’s unlikely that a pet owner would crack open a beer to share with their pet, it’s important to keep an eye on your drink. Dogs are sneaky, and they can drain your glass of wine or beer faster than you think. Never let your dog drink even a tiny bit of alcohol.

·       Raisins and Grapes

You may be tempted to give your dog a raisin as a treat. Resist the temptation. Grapes and especially raisins can cause kidney failure in dogs. A larger dog may be able to eat a few grapes or raisins and be fine, but the compounds can quickly build up in their system.

There are a few other foods that your dog can’t eat, which may surprise you:

·       Avocado

·       Lemons and Limes

·       Onions

·       Garlic

·       Macadamia Nuts

Your Dog and Human Food

There’s nothing wrong with giving your dog a little treat from time to time, presuming you keep it in moderation and avoid the dangerous foods.

However, all dogs are individuals. A treat that’s fine for one dog could upset another dog’s stomach. If in doubt, leave it out!

- My Dog Has Wind - How To Help Flatulence In Dogs - Peak Pets

My Dog has Wind – How to Help Flatulence in Dogs

My Dog has Wind – How to Help Flatulence in Dogs

Wind is a normal bodily function in both humans and dogs. A build-up of gas in the intestine causes flatulence, usually occurring whilst the body is trying to break down food.

Gas, although unpleasant, is usually not a cause for concern in our pets. However, if it becomes a persistent issue, there are many home remedies that should ease your dog’s discomfort.

A small number of medical conditions are associated with flatulence in dogs; which may indicate your dog is actually in pain. Although this is very unlikely, it is worth bearing in mind should the flatulence persist. If the wind is accompanied by prolonged sickness and diarrhoea, you should seek assistance from your vet immediately.

The Signs of Flatulence in Dogs

  • Excessive rumbling or sounds from the abdomen
  • Swollen stomach and bloating
  • Regular expulsion of gas from the anus

The Causes of Flatulence in Dogs

There are a variety of causes of flatulence in dogs.

The least sinister reason may simply be that they are inhaling too much food as they are eating. This is likely to be because they are giddy and excited to get their food; and can be resolved by feeding your dog smaller portions more often throughout the day.

This can also be helped by investing in a specifically designed bowl to ensure your dog eats more slowly. If flatulence is caused by your dog inhaling air, the wind should be relatively odourless.

Alternatively, flatulence may be due to certain foods that are making their way into your dog’s diet. There are many foods that dogs will struggle to digest, including peas, beans, and milk, causing your dog to expel excess gas.

Many budget dog foods will use milk and other dairy products to thicken the gravy, and many dogs are lactose intolerant. So, switching to a more premium dog food may be a quick fix to your flatulence issues.

Keep a close eye on any snacks and treats your dog is being fed throughout the day, which may be causing excess gas. Additionally, if you have recently switched your dog’s food, and have noticed a considerable increase in wind, then you will have likely found a quick and easy fix to your issues.

There are also a few, uncommon, more sinister reasons for flatulence in dogs, including viral infections, parasites, and bowel disease.

Some Breeds will have More Wind

Flatulence is much more common among certain breeds of dog. Short-nosed dogs such as bulldogs and boxers suffer greatly from excess gas, as the nature of their face means they inadvertently inhale excess gas during dinnertime.

How to Know if the Wind is Causing Pain

If the gas is prolonged or excessive, it is likely your dog is suffering from at least a small level of discomfort. However, unlike humans, dogs do not have the power to communicate this verbally, so the discomfort or pain often shows itself in the dog’s behaviour.

Often dogs will become lethargic and sleep more, showing little interest in things they usually love. However, some dogs show increased irritability and aggression and can begin chewing furniture and other objects in a bid for attention.

Treatments for Flatulence

The most straightforward fix for your dog will be to ensure they have no access to any scraps or excessive treats. On the most part, dogs should not be consuming food made for humans, especially those that are heavily seasoned. Restricting them to their dinner bowl should help resolve your dog’s flatulence issues. Foods such as vegetables present no serious dangers for your dog, but can have stinky repercussions.

If this is not effective, you may want to consider changing up their diet. As mentioned, cheaper dog foods often bulk their meat out with wheat or milk, both of which dogs cannot usually digest. Do not assume that just because a food is labelled as hypoallergenic, it will cure your dog’s flatulence issues; it entirely depends on your pet’s circumstances.

Consider adding probiotics into your dog’s daily routine to help their digestive system function fully.  Probiotics will help support good gut health in your pet.

Increase your dog’s activity level. Dogs may suffer from digestion problems, which lead to excessive wind if they are not getting enough exercise. Stick to a regular walking routine with your pet to ensure everything is working as it should.

It may be the case that your dog was born with or has developed a food allergy which is causing the flatulence, and undoubtedly a great deal of discomfort. Your vet should be able to run routine tests for this simply, and if this is the case the issue should be quickly resolved by eliminating the food.

One Step at a Time

When making dietary changes or adding in supplements to your dog’s diet and routine, make sure you make one change at a time.

This way, you will be able to see the reason for any changes in your pet, helping to develop long lasting habits that prevent the flatulence reoccurring.

When to See a Vet About Wind

When your dog has flatulence, it can be difficult to know when to visit your vet.

You should have already tried everything mentioned above, such as changing their diet. You should also ensure they have not had any ‘treats’, have no access to any scraps from the dinner table, and have a regular exercise routine. If you have implemented these changes but the wind continues, it is time to see a vet.

A vet will diagnose any possible allergies or anything more sinister that may be lying beneath. They may also simply be able to assure you that what you are experiencing is entirely normal.

Your vet will more than likely ask you for a sample of the dog’s stool, as well as details of their current diet and exercise regime.

If flatulence is paired with vomiting or diarrhoea, it is always best to seek a vet’s advice.