People have mixed feelings about feeding scraps and leftovers to dogs. Some even detest the very thought of it, insisting that it is damaging to their dog’s health. On the other hand, there are people who have always given their leftovers to their pooches without seeing any health problems. And like anything you can find research supporting each and every opinion… If both parties have a ground to base their arguments on, what is really at heart of these differences?
There are three words we keep in mind when thinking about leftovers – thought, moderation, and balance.
Yes, you can give leftovers to your dog – but in moderation, and provided that your dog’s diet is balanced. Moreover, this is assuming you have thought about the types of foods are known to not do well for dogs.
For example, some clear ‘No No’s include:
- Foods sweetened with Xylitol like baked goods and some diet foods, can cause your dog’s blood sugar to drop and can also cause liver failure.
- Avocados, while tasty, can be poisonous to your dogs if eaten too much.
- Onions and garlic can kill your dog’s red blood cells leading to anemia. Not good!
- Even a small amount of raisins or grapes can make a dog sick and lead to kidney failure.
- Everyone knows about no chocolate right? It can cause a dog to vomit and have diarrhea. It can also cause heart problems, tremors, seizures, and yes – death.
You should not feed your dog with ONLY leftovers, because your leftover food (as good as it may be in your opinion) probably does not provide all the nutrients that your dog requires. In fact, it may contain too much of a particular substance that can be harmful for your dog – for example, fat. SO make sure that yur dog is getting their nutritious balanced diet first, then think about the potential of leftovers in moderation.
Sounds like a lot of work? Well it should be. This may be why opponents vehemently stand against feeding scraps and leftovers to dogs – it is just too risky!
Given all this, if you are ready to be thoughtful and mindful then you can go ahead by all means and give your dog some good tasting leftovers like lean cooked meat; some fresh fruits like watermelon and apples; vegetables like carrots and yes even zucchini.
Remember: Thought, Moderation, and Balance.