At our dog training program in Northern Virginia, we always get asked about which treats they should give their dogs.
First, we generally recommend all-natural treats, like Unleashed Treats. Just like people, the less the ingredients, the healthier the food.
When providing treats for your dog, there are some things to consider if you want it to benefit him. A treat from time to time is suitable for rewards, especially during training. There are certain kinds of foods which may seem like something special to you, but will harm your pet. Here are some guidelines about giving your canine pet a special item.
You should avoid certain foods as they are toxic to dogs. These include chocolate, raisins, grapes and onions. Poultry bones can splinter and do real damage to the intestines of your pet. If you don’t want your dog to be a pest at mealtime, don’t sneak a treat from your plate. Avoid giving pooch a treat if he is on a weight management diet. Finally, avoid giving treats in place of meals.
Instead of food treats all the time, think about alternatives. A chew product is one example, Rawhide strips can be provided for hours of chewing. Dogs also like hooves and ears to chew on. Beef knuckles and oxtails can be another treat for your pet. If you choose fresh meat products, you may want to have a specific place where they are enjoyed.
Regardless of the type of treat, pay attention to the size of the object. If your dog is a gulper, care must be taken to avoid choking on a large chunk of rawhide. Remove fragments of this type of treat before the pet tries to swallow it whole. The old standby, of course is milk bones. They have been marketed for many years and are still widely sold. Some people are conscientious enough about what is consumed by their dogs that they mix and bake their own doggy treats.
The main principles that you should abide by when giving the dog a special treat is to do so as a treat, Moderation is the basis for any dietary component. You can read more about this in my blog on Managing Your Dog’s Weight. Avoid foods that are toxic to canines and avoid feeding your pet from the table unless you plan to make a habit of it. Regulate the size of the treats and when they are given.