It is important that dogs receive good nutrition to remain healthy. Good nutrition should include a proper balance of protein, fruits, vegetables and carbohydrates, unless your dog requires a special diet due to a medical condition. Still, it is essential to know which foods are safe for dogs, as many foods can be harmful if ingested by your dog. Read on for a list of healthy and safe foods you can feed your dog.
Canines are carnivores, therefore, it is essential that they receive adequate amounts of protein. This protein should be in the form of low-fat, high quality meats, such as chicken, turkey, beef, venison and rabbit, according to Dr. Ian Billinghurst, founder of the BARF diet. Dogs can also receive protein in the form of eggs and cheese, but dairy products should be given in moderation, as they can cause stomach upset. Every dog has unique dietary needs, so it is best to check with your veterinarian when changing your dog’s diet.
Fruits can provide essential vitamins that dogs need, in addition to minerals and small amounts of protein and fat. Some fruits, such as apples and pears, can also provide the fiber that is necessary in canine diets. Grapefruit provides flavonoids and soluble fiber. Oranges not only supply vitamin C but contain potassium, folate and thiamine. While most fruits are beneficial to canines, some should be avoided. Grapes and raisins can damage a dog’s kidneys, and the pits of peaches, plums and other stone fruit can cause obstructions in the intestinal tract, according to the animal information website Doctors Foster and Smith. Furthermore, citrus oil extracts can cause vomiting.
Vegetables supply a large amount of vitamins and nutrients to dogs, as well as soluble and insoluble fiber. Carrots, with their high fiber content and beta carotene, make healthy treats. Spinach contains large amounts of iron, as well as fiber, potassium and calcium. Broccoli, celery and bell peppers are also tasty and provide your pooch with essential nutrients. On the other hand, dogs should never eat onions, as they can cause anemia, according to the Doctors Foster and Smith website. In addition, mushrooms should be avoided, as they contain toxins that can cause shock and even death.
The value of carbohydrates in a dog’s diet if often debated among nutritionists, according to the Doctors Foster and Smith website. If not fed correctly, carbs can be responsible for many health problems. However, most commercial dog foods contain carbohydrates, and many dogs do well and live healthy lives eating them. If you choose to feed your canine carbohydrates, then oats, barley, corn, wheat and rice are usually tolerated, according to the Doctors Foster and Smith website.