No matter how big or small your dog is, you may be thinking of making the switch from high-calorie treats to something healthier and less expensive. But just because something is natural, doesn’t mean it’s always good for you – or your dog.
While fruits and vegetables aren’t necessary if you’re already feeding your furry friend quality commercial food. However, they do make excellent treats that are tasty and low in calories.
These are a great alternative, especially for the dog who is always hungry, no matter how much you feed him. Frozen vegetables can be a great option for pups that need to lay off the biscuits for a while – hey even dogs need to go on a diet sometime.
Most fruits and vegetables are safe for dogs to eat. Because our canine friends are natural omnivores, they eat a variety of foods. So, which fruit and veggie treats are safe – and not safe – for your dog? Vet Street shares some tips.
“Best in Show” Fruits/Veggies for Dogs
- Green beans
- Cooked sweet potato
- Apples (without seeds)
- Bananas (offering frozen bananas keeps the squishy mess to a minimum)
Worst Fruits/Veggies for Dogs
- Onions, garlic, leeks or chives (members of the Allium family) — these contain organosulfoxides, which are toxic to pets; cooking does not reduce their toxicity potential
- Grapes or raisins — can cause illness and kidney damage
- Raw potatoes
- Wild mushrooms
- Apple cores with seeds (also avoid seeds from other fruits, such as watermelon)
- Stone fruits — for their potential to cause choking
- Rhubarb leaves (the stems are safe)
While you’ll find plenty of treat options in the produce aisle, it’s important to remember that any fruit or vegetable can be harmful if eaten in large quantities. So always feed new treats in moderation. While most produce is okay for your dog to eat, not all of it is. Some foods are toxic to your dog, or can cause gastrointestinal disturbances. Be sure to see the complete list on the ASPCA website to avoid a preventable mishap.
Remember to keep your fruit and veggie treats to 10% or less of your pet’s diet. And be sure to thoroughly wash all produce and remove all pits or rinds before feeding it to your dog. (Don’t let them eat right from the tree!)
So, if you’re looking for a healthier, economical treat option for your dog, consider adding fresh fruits and vegetables to your pup’s diet. Just remember if you are ever in doubt, always consult with your vet first to make sure the food is safe for your pet to eat.