What Happens To Dogs Who Eat Table Scraps? –The Answer That Will Make You Think
We all love our dogs – they are members of our families. A dog’s non-judgmental, unconditional loving can make you feel like you are the most important person on the planet! We can’t help giving dogs treats of table scraps!
But, we have a responsibility to our four-legged friends: keep them healthy. Our dogs rely on us to provide love, companionship, veterinary care, shelter, food, and water.
A Dog’s Diet
Commercial dog foods is specifically designed for a dog’s digestive system. Like humans, dogs, are omnivores– eating meats, grains, fruits, and vegetables.
Many of us, especially those who have hunting breeds (huskies, hounds, retrievers, setters) mistakenly think that our dogs are more or less carnivore. Just like ours, a dog’s level of protein intake should be about one-quarter of the overall diet.
A balanced diet for a dog should be 25% protein, 25% carbohydrates and grains, and 50% fruits and vegetables. Most dog food brands meet this balance. You can further improve your dog’s health by using the higher quality, organic or all-natural brands of dog food.
When dogs are kept on a regular diet with a dog food that meets their needs, their health will remain good. Owners sometimes overdo it with table scraps. This is a mistake. By stimulating this bad habit, our dogs can become obese, become fickle about eating their food, or possibly eat something that is poisonous to them.
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Problems from Table Scraps
An obese dog is prone to many health problems: diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, difficulty breathing, high blood pressure, weakness, liver disease, increased risk of cancers, and a bad immune system. If you love your dog, it is in both yours and dog’s best interest to stay at a healthy weight.
Many dogs are already finicky eaters –don’t make the situation worse by piling on the table scraps. Dogs are a lot like kids in this sense. Why should they eat their greens if you are willingly offering cake?
Table scraps are like junk food to dogs –it’s a digression from their everyday, monotonous diet of dog food.
The following foods are toxic to dogs: chocolate, garlic, onions, alcohol, macadamia nuts, raisins, grapes, milk and dairy products, salt, sugar- free foods (with artificial sweeteners), fat trimmings and bones, persimmons, peaches, and plums.
Most people are aware that chocolate is toxic to dogs, but the other foods listed are not only consumed individually, but also used in many recipes. Yes, your pup may love your stuffing, but if you used onions, garlic, nuts, and/or grapes in the recipe, you could be poisoning your pet!
- Onions and garlic can destroy the dog’s red blood cells. This can lead to a dangerous state of anemia, with symptoms like vomiting, trouble breathing, and elevated heart rate. This condition should be treated by a veterinarian immediately.
- Giving alcohol to your pet seems like a stupid idea, right? That’s because it is. It takes very little alcohol for a dog to become intoxicated. This intoxication can quickly lead to vomiting, seizures, and death.
- Macadamia nuts are toxic – and there is no treatment. Symptoms of macadamia poisoning include tremors, fever, muscle weakness (particularly in the hindquarters), vomiting, and joint pain.
- Grapes and raisins are also toxic to dogs. Being poisoned by this type of fruits will lead to dehydration, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, and kidney failure. Even a very small amount can be fatal for a dog. A single grape can potentially kill a small dog.
- Milk and dairy products are a bad idea because dogs are naturally lactose intolerant. Ice cream may seem like a harmless treat every now and again, but consuming it can give a dog an upset stomach, painful gas, and diarrhea.
- Salt is another poison to dogs. An excess intake of salt will affect their sodium ion balance, causing symptoms like walking “drunk", vomiting, and diarrhea. A sodium overdose can cause damage to the kidneys, seizures, coma, and death. Don’t share salty treats with your dog.
- A majority of sugar- free foods and human treats (like gum and candy) contain Xylitol, an artificial sweetener poisonous to dogs. Never leave sugar-free items within a dog’s reach. Ingesting even a small amount of Xylitol can lead to vomiting, seizures, liver failure, and death.
- Fat trimmings, whether cooked or not, can cause pancreatitis in dogs. This will affect their insulin production, hormone efficiency, and is extremely painful. If not caught in time, this condition can also lead to death.
- Animal bones are another danger as they can be a choking hazard. Bones from small fowl are also prone to breaking or splintering, so they are not only a choking hazard, but if ingested, the shards can seriously damage your dog’s digestive tract.
- Persimmons, peaches, and plums all have dangerous seeds and pits. Persimmon seeds can cause inflammation of the digestive tract and bowel obstructions. The pits of peaches and plums contain cyanide, which is poisonous to both dogs and humans.
Be aware – Take good care
If it seems that danger lurks in every corner of your kitchen, take heart! There is plenty of foods that dogs can safely eat in moderation.
Dogs like grain cereals like Cheerios, peanut butter, oatmeal, cooked chicken, pumpkin flesh, baked salmon, green beans, eggs, and many fruits and vegetables. In the summertime, a slice of frozen fruit (such as a peach or mango) is a beautiful, icy treat for your overheated pooch.
Giving our dogs table scraps is not necessarily a bad idea, but we must be educated in what is safe to feed our pets, how those foods will affect their weight, and how to protect their overall health by avoiding overindulgence.
Please leave your comments below or leave a question for us to answer. Always remember: your table is not your dog’s table. Feed smart!