Dog Care
7 Healthy Treats For Your Dog

7 Healthy Treats For Your Dog

I know this doesn’t seem like I am talking about healthy treats for your dog but bear with me. I remember my grandfather, who was with the Zoology Department of the University of Wisconsin for years talking about how cats and dogs are a lot like human toddlers. They are intelligent, and more responsive to you the more time you spend with them.

7 Healthy Treats For Your Dog article cover image

Now think about feeding a toddler – as you go into soft foods and then gradually harder ones. Some things are a hit and some a total failure.

You will have some of the same struggles if you go by the “try it 10 times” rule when you are testing puppers on a new fruit or vegetable.

7 Healthy Treats For Your Dog

Some, they will totally love. Others? They will spit out and look at you like you are crazy to even imply that it was edible.

What are the healthiest dog treats?

I am going to share a list of fruits, veggies, and grains that you can feed Fido without a worry. They are high in nutrients, have fiber for digestion, and occasionally double as a tool to remove plaque and tartar from their teeth.

As odd as this may sound, pig ears are a natural favorite for many of our furry friends. They contain a reasonable amount of fat, and dogs find the flavor irresistible (much like some humans and pork rinds). Pig ear treats should be baked instead of chemically processed and should have no added preservatives or coloring agents. Check your package label carefully.

Making Healthy Food For Your Dog

I am not digging into recipes here today, but rest assured, if these items are in some blogger’s homemade pup treat recipe, you should feel confident trying it with your own pooch. When looking at y our favorite bloggers – keep in mind that a lot of recipes call for garlic powder. HUGE no-no as it is toxic to dogs. THAT is why I made the free printable list for you that you see below.

Which treats are bad for dogs?

That being said, let’s quickly look at some things that are at the top of the no-no list. Chocolate is a given that we have all heard about. Pretty much anything in the onion family should be avoided: onions, garlic, and even chives!

Grapes, and their older brother the raisin. Liver damage and Kidney failure are serious side-effects for munching on those.

Fake sugar – Xylitol to be exact. This really isn’t surprising if fake sugar affects humans so much – those little blue packets can trigger migraines and the pink ones have been linked to cancer!

Avocados are the ones that surprised me, as I am jamming on avocado toast with a dash of everything bagel seasoning. It hits their digestive system hard and causes vomiting or diarrhea. 

The last thing I am going to suggest you avoid is ANY dog treat made in China. They have poisoned so many things with their lax manufacturing: toothpaste, baby food, pet food, drywall — I could go on and on. Why take the risk for your furry friend?

Yes, we love natural dog treats!

Natural dog treats contain no added chemical preservatives or fillers, leaving your dog with straight nutritional value, nothing more. Natural treats also use the highest grade of edible products and processing techniques to ensure they’re even fit for human consumption which who knows, might help if you ever get stuck in a survival situation with your dog! 

Which treats do Vets recommend?

If you don’t want to give people food to your pup, here are the top-recommended healthy treats for your dog from Veterinarians:

What human food is good for dog treats?

If you are looking at what are good healthy treats for dogs – it is almost like feeding that toddler we mentioned! You might be surprised to realize that natural dog treats exist right in your refrigerator, or in your garden. 

10 good vs bad treats for dogs

Get your own FREE printable copy of our safe treat list here:

Carrots, apple slices, and celery are all terrific natural dog treats, providing vitamins without added chemical enhancers. Just give these treats a wash before giving them to your dogs. For an extra-special treat, chop up your fruits or veggies, and mix with a dab of peanut butter!

Apples

Apples are the perfect healthy treat for your dog. Most dogs can’t get enough of the sweet taste of fresh apples. Apples are also a great source of vitamins and nutrients, including calcium, vitamin C, and vitamin K.

Remove the core and cut the apple into slices before you give it to your dog. Apple seeds and stems contain cyanogenic glycosides, which cause hydrogen cyanide to be released when chewed. Also, slicing the apple beforehand makes it easier for your dog to eat without the possibility of choking.

Bananas

While bananas have a ton of healthy nutrients, their high sugar content makes them a favorite among dogs. Just be sure not to overdo it. Even people have issues if they eat too many.

Remove the core and cut the apple into slices before you give it to your dog. Apple seeds and stems contain cyanogenic glycosides, which cause hydrogen cyanide to be released when chewed. Also, slicing the apple beforehand makes it easier for your dog to eat without the possibility of choking.

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Pumpkin

Pumpkin is another popular choice when it comes to healthy dog treats. Every pumpkin contains vitamin A and beta-carotene, which helps dogs stay healthy and strong. Vitamin A is especially important to young dogs. Why? It helps to maintain a healthy growth rate.

Pumpkin is also a source of other nutrients, including fiber, iron, potassium, and zinc. If you feed your dog fresh pumpkin, it’s best to bake it first to soften it. Another option is canned, unsweetened pumpkin purée. This is easy to find around the holidays at your local Dollar Tree store – stock up on a few cans for just a buck each!

This goes for sweet potatoes too – after all, aren’t they related? They have twice as much fiber as a pumpkin, and a higher concentration of protein.

Carrots

Carrots are also a great source of beta-carotene, making them another snack that’s great for younger dogs. Cook them, mash them and mix them into dry dog food, to add a healthy twist to your dog’s usual dinner.

Or, cut them into smaller pieces and take them with you on trips for a healthy treat for dogs on the go. Baby carrots are perfect for this, because they’re already a size that’s easy for most dogs to manage.

Berries

Strawberries, Blueberries, I’m really not too picky here. Yes, these are high in sugar like bananas are, so you want to keep them from being over-indulged in. It is OK for pups to eat the rainbow but in moderation.

Brown Rice

Being a bit bland, brown rice may not seem like something your dog would be excited to eat. But, rice is a healthy source of energy, making it another great addition to their usual mealtime routine. It’s also very gentle on your dog’s stomach. So, it’s ideal for when he’s experiencing tummy trouble.

Eggs

Can dogs eat eggs? Are eggs good for dogs? Yes. Eggs are good for dogs to eat. Of course, they are rich in protein, but aside from that eggs are also a good source of linoleic acid and fat-soluble vitamins like Vitamin A.

Avoid RAW eggs and treat your pooch to either some that are scrambled or hard-boiled that you cut up.

When trying out new treats for your dog, it’s always best to start with small portions and see how your dog’s personal GI tract responds. In the long run, healthy treats for dogs will rock their world!

Check out these other great tips for dogs:

healthy dog treats in a bowl

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