It is not uncommon for our beloved, furry companions to receive table scraps, extra treats or have additional food added to their meals. After all, when your dog looks at you with those big brown eyes you can’t help yourself. Unfortunately, doting on our pets by giving them ‘human food’ as treats or meal supplements only has negative or harmful effects.
One of the most common problems with giving dogs human food is that we simply don’t know how it really affects them. For example, while bacon for a human adult is not the healthiest option, it can fit into the day’s calorie intake. One piece of bacon for a dog is roughly 1/5 of their entire daily calorie intake. Foods that are high in fat content are also difficult for our dogs to digest and may cause bad reactions. Your dog could suffer from vomiting, diarrhoea and in some cases it can also cause inflammation of the pancreas. Long term effects of a diet high in fat can include obesity, coronary issues, joint problems and shorter life spans.
Aside from weight issues, dogs also react poorly to many of our everyday foods due to an allergic reaction or an inability to properly digest it. Here is a basic run down of just some of the foods you should NOT be giving your dog:
- Chocolate – the more they eat the worse their reaction can be. Dogs may develop stomach cramps, stomach upset, increased thirst and rate of breathing, convulsions and more. Severe cases may lead to death. Each dog reacts differently to chocolate and recovery may take several days. Why risk it?
- Onions and garlic – These can cause a type of anaemia, making the red blood cells fragile and at risk of bursting. Onions may be lethal for dogs and cats.
- Grapes and raisins have the potential to cause kidney failure.
- Alcohol – dogs can have the same effects from alcohol as humans do. However, it takes far less alcohol to do much more damage. Just small amounts can lead diarrhoea, vomiting, problems with the central nervous system, difficulty breathing and more.
- Yeast – Yeast or uncooked yeast products have the potential to expand in your dog’s stomach once digested. Surgery may be required to remove it.
- Coffee and other caffeine – Ingesting large amounts of caffeine can be fatal for dogs. Symptoms also include hyperactivity, rapid breathing, seizures and heart palpitations.
- Dairy products – Milk and other products can cause stomach upset or allergic reactions.
- Macadamia nuts – A small amount of macadamia nuts can lead to illness and paralysis.
It is important that every dog owner is educated on the best diet for their dogs and the effects of feeding them the wrong food. Above are just some of the foods that may lead to illness, or in some cases, death of our family pets. We are not doing our dogs any favours by feeding them portions of our meals at the table. Aside from the obvious behaviour problems this may cause, the expression ‘killing them with kindness’ could become more accurate than we’d like.SHARE