Did you know that one of Fido’s favorite holidays is around the corner? February 23rd is Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day! If there’s one thing all our canine patients have in common, it’s a love of treats. (Dogs are also pretty fond of toys, belly rubs, and car rides, but that’s another topic.) Read on as a Lake Orion, MI vet offers tips on feeding your pooch snacks.

Buying Treats

It’s always a good idea to keep some doggy treats on hand. When shopping, get in the habit of reading labels. Meat, fish, or chicken should be listed first and most often. Avoid anything with an ingredient list that reads like a chemical experiment. Also, be sure to pick treats that are appropriate for your canine buddy’s age and size. A senior Pomeranian has very different nutritional needs than a Saint Bernard puppy!

Making Snacks

If you enjoy cooking, you may want to consider making your dog’s treats. You’ll find tons of great recipes online. The benefit here is that you’ll know exactly what Fido is eating. You can also customize his snacks to suit his tastes and needs. Plus, homemade doggy treats make great gifts for your pup’s canine friends. Just stick to ingredients that you know are safe. Some good options are cooked, plain, boneless meat, fish, or poultry; sodium-free broth; bacon bits; cheese; eggs; peas; carrots; plain yogurt; natural peanut butter; liver powder; and olive oil. Ask your vet for specific advice.

Portion Control

If it were up to Fido, he’d probably be enjoying snacks all day, every day. However, you aren’t doing your pooch any favors by overindulging him. In general, treats should only make up about 5 percent of your pet’s daily food intake.

Unsafe Foods

Dogs will eat pretty much anything, so it’s really important to know what is and isn’t safe for them. Many popular foods are toxic to Fido! Never give your furry pal anything that contains garlic, onions, scallions, or chives; chocolate; caffeine; pitted fruits; avocado; alcohol; grapes, currants, or raisins; or xylitol, which is found in many processed foods. Meat on the bone is also unsafe, as are raw dough, most dairy products, and anything with a lot of salt, sugar, or fat. Ask your vet for more information.

As your local Lake Orion, MI vet clinic, we are dedicated to offering great care. Call us today!