10 Healthy Snacks You Can Feed Your Dog
Chances are you’d do anything to put a smile on your dog’s face. What makes a dog happier than a healthy lifestyle?
Well, a 16-ounce steak might really put them over the moon, but a healthy lifestyle will ensure your dog is able to move, think, and play with ease each day. Besides keeping your dog active, you should ensure they have a well-rounded diet full of fresh foods. But what are some healthy dog treats?
Here are just a few to treat your dog:
Your parents likely told you to eat your carrots as a kid because it would improve your eyesight. While you might have come to love them through eating them at every family dinner, can your dog eat them?
They can! Carrots are excellent for a dog’s health. They contain a multitude of vitamins, the antioxidant beta-carotene, and a good deal of fiber. Best of all, they can even improve your dog’s dental health when served raw. Their crunchy consistency will help them clean their teeth while chewing and gnawing.
However, if your dog is one not much for chewing, rather acting like a Hoover vacuum, you might want to chop up their carrots before serving them. It will help reduce the chances of choking, which everyone will be thankful for.
Celery might be boring to us, but think of how exciting they are to a dog? The crunchy treat is sure to be a hit, as it will give them something excellent to chew and gnaw on. Best of all, it’s packed with vitamins A, B, and C, which can really boost your dog’s immune system.
- Green Peas
Looking to add a nutritional kick to your dog’s kibble? Throw in some fresh or frozen green peas. While they’re full of various vitamins and minerals, green peas are absolutely incredible when it comes to vitamin C.
- Green Beans
Who doesn’t love a crisp green bean? Not only do they have a texture your dog will love, but they have a great deal of minerals and vitamins that can boost your dog’s overall health, including iron, fiber, potassium, and vitamins A, C, and K.
- Collagen Chews
Sometimes you need a treat that can do anything and everything – something that tastes incredible and is great for their overall health. Collagen chews are an excellent option when you’re reaching for a healthy treat. Natural collagen is great for your dog’s health, as it can improve digestion, joint health, and improve their coats. Collagen sticks also provide your dog with something tough to chew on, which makes it easy for them to clean their teeth.
Watermelon is an excellent snack, particularly for the hydration it offers. Watermelon is approximately 92 percent water, which makes it an exceptional snack for those hot, humid summer days. Best of all, they’re packed with vitamins A, B6, and C.
Just make sure that the watermelon is seedless and that your dog can’t get their snouts near the rinds. Both can be bad for the digestive system.
Your dog is bound to love the taste of pumpkin, with its sweet, earthy, nutty flavor. But there’s even more to it than that: pumpkin is full of beta-carotene, fiber, and potassium. However, you should be careful how you serve it. You can always settle for fresh pumpkin that’s been steamed, but if it’s not in season, you’ll want to reach for canned pumpkin puree. Just make sure there’s no added spices, salt, or sugar.
Similar to pumpkin, all squashes do the trick when it comes to healthy dog treats. The best options include those that are seedless, including butternut, yellow/summer, and zucchini. If you decide to give them any other kind, just ensure you remove all seeds to avoid stomach upset.
What’s not to love about apples? They keep the doctor away and are fresh, sweet, earthy, and crisp. Did we mention crisp? We know how much dogs love crispy, crunchy food, and apples certainly fulfill that requirement.
They’re an exceptional snack for your dog, as their fiber content can aid digestion all while their multitude of nutrients and antioxidants can help improve your dog’s health against other ailments and conditions.
However, you should make sure they don't happen to eat the core and its seeds. Seeds are often bad for a dog’s health, and apple seeds are a little worse. They contain the compound amygdalin, which is a type of poisonous cyanide. While fine in small doses, eating multiple apple cores can be detrimental to your dog’s health.
Broccoli is truly one of the earth’s greatest vegetables. Loaded with protein and fiber, it is equally full of calcium, iron, potassium, and magnesium. That’s not even mentioning the amount of vitamins A, B, C, and K they contain.
However, with broccoli being so high in fiber, it could lead to stomach upset in your dog. It’s in your best interest to cook it before serving, for that reason. You can either roast it or steam it. However, do not add salt or oil when cooking.
Keeping an Eye on Your Dog’s Diet
When you decide to introduce healthy snacks to your dog, you should be mindful. Of what? First and foremost, their gastrointestinal tract. Your dog may get an upset stomach from the food you give them. So as long as it doesn’t make them sick, they should adjust to it in no time.
Second, you should be aware of your dog’s caloric intake. The general rule of thumb is that your dog’s daily diet shouldn’t be more than 10 percent treats. You’ll want to keep this in mind, relative to your dog’s daily caloric intake.
With all these in mind, it should be said that you should only feed the above healthy snacks to your dog if they are fresh or canned (so long as they have no added salt). Moreover, if you ever serve your dog a cooked vegetable or food, they should not be cooked with oil or salt. Rather, they should either be simply boiled in unsalted water or roasted in the oven.
Do your part to improve your dog’s health. With healthy snacks, they’ll love every single bite you give them.